Early History of Valencia, Spain


ciudad artes cienciasValencia's rather lengthy history doesn't cover just a few centuries; instead, it spans entire millenniums! From the day Roman warriors set down roots along the River Turia, they knew that Valencia was bound to be something special.

Today, with its fascinating past tucked under its belt, Valencia is a forward-looking city that both celebrates the bygone times and boldly leads Spain into the awaiting future- just take a look at the ultra-modern City of Arts and Sciences! Read up on the budding days of Valencia's history below, and then navigate through the links to bring you up to present day!

Early History of Valencia
Valencia's rather lengthy history reaches all the way back to 138 BC when the Iberian peninsula was a part of the massive Roman Empire. Following the Second Punic War, Roman legionaries settled down and built up a city on the banks of the River Turia that they named "Valentia," a name which obviously bears resemblance to the current "Valencia."

Known for their mastery of design and flawless architecture, the Romans set up and developed the region's first irrigation system- a series of canals and dams that the Moors would further elaborate a few years down the road. Head to the Plaza de la Almoina in Valencia to explore the extensive Roman archaeological ruins that have been discovered- it doesn't take much to realize that the Romans knew how to construct things that lasted!

With the collapse of the mighty Roman Empire, the Visigoths - tribes who were of Germanic origin - moved in and played a major role in national affairs for over two centuries. Unfortunately, as the end of the Visigoth reign neared, the society was plagued with internal conflicts, epidemics and other crises that chipped away at the Visigoths' political and social unity. The Moors, seeing the very obvious opportunity for a take-over, took advantage of the chaos and took the reins with little, if any, opposition.

Learn about other epochs of Valencia history!