Guadalupe: General (Video)

Guadalupe is a Spanish municipality in the province of Cáceres, in the autonomous community of Extremadura. The town is the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria de Guadalupe, considered one of the greatest symbols of Extremadura and in the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe, patron saint of the region. The Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe was the most important Marian shrine of the medieval kingdom of Castile. Pilgrims began arriving in 1326, and in 1340 King Alfonso XI took a personal interest in the developing a sanctuary, attributing his victory over the Moors at the battle of Rio Salado to the intercession of the Virgin. Our Lady of Guadalupe, with Santiago de Compostela and Our Lady of Pilar, became a meeting point for Christians in the Spanish reconquest of Iberia.

Early historical documents cover the granting of land to the settlers of Guadalupe by King Alfonso XI in 1340, and in 1347 the name of Puebla de Santa María de Guadalupe is mentioned. In 1389 the sanctuary was given to the Jeromes priests and remained in their custody until 1835. It was abandoned for several decades until 1908, when the Franciscans took over the monastery.