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The Lovers City > The lovers of teruel

the lovers of teruel


If there is a legendary story that identify Teruel in the world that is the story of Lovers of Teruel.  Background of this story is found in the Decamerón de Bocaccio and famous writers such as Tirso de Molina, Andrés Rey de Artieda o Juan Pérez de Montalbán wrote about them in the Golden Age. During the Romanticism, Juan Eugenio Hartzenbusch was inspired by the Lovers’ story to write the plot of his most famous work and Tomás Bretón composed the opera about them, that was released in the Royal Theatre in Madrid. In painting, Muñoz de Grain’s picture, is the most remarkable, and in sculpture the work of Juan de Avalos. In films, the most important one is “Luna de miel”- Honeymoon 1958 by Michael Powel, with music of Mikis Theodoraki, and performed by Ludmila Tcherina and the famous dancer Antonio.

The story takes place in Teruel in the XIII century, when the city of Teruel was a border place against the Muslim Taifas from Levante. Juan Diego de Marcilla and Isabel de Segura, in love since their childhood, want to marry, but Isabel’s father, called  Don Pedro, is contrary to this wedding for economic reasons. She is a rich heiress, and he is the second son in a family with very little inheritance. Diego manages that Isabel’s family to give him a period of time of five year to make fortune and he immediately goes to war, that was the only way to get fortune in that time. Meanwhile Isabel will remain waiting in the city.

Years passed and there was no news about the young knight, who after many battles was accumulating the needed fortune to come to his love’s family and get the approval for the wedding. None of the days Don Diego stayed away stopped thinking in Isabel and neither did Isabel. But as there was no news of Diego, Isabel´s father thought he should find a rich man to whom she could get married and he set the eyes at Pedro de Azagra, a powerful man and brother of the Lord of Albarracín.

Shortly before, Juan Diego de Marcilla, who had already acquired enough wealth in the war, was on his way to reach Teruel on the date when the deadline ended. That day, the families of Azagra y Segura had held the marriage of their son and daughter, and when de lover crosses with his horse the Andaquilla gate he finds out the news of the wedding. Desperate, that night he climbed into the just married house and, entering into the chambers of the bride, asked her a kiss that she denied to him as a married woman she was. Due to the pain that this fact produces to him, Diego falls down dead.

Next day, while the funeral was taking place, Doña Isabel stood up from her seat in the church and came near the body. Taking off the veil covering Marcilla’s face, she gave him the kiss which she had denied to him in life. Instantly she fell dead on the body of his beloved. When the town knew the fact, their families buried them together. Since the History will know them as The Lovers of Teruel.

Nowadays the remains, under Juan de Avalos great sculptures, can be visited in the mausoleum attached to Saint Peter’s Church. Tens of thousands of visitors from all parts of the world come to pay a tribute to them.

Lovers of Teruel Foundation:

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