Ancient village of Rodén, Fuentes de Ebro


TYPE OF ASSET: Historical site




Original construction This is an ancient village that may date back to a Roman settlement (Rudius). Centuries later, it was occupied by the Muslims. After it was conquered by the Aragonese monarchs, Zurita notes that, by 1291, it belonged to Pedro Jordán de Peña, lord of Arenós and later, in 1414, to the archbishop of Zaragoza, in whose possession it would remain as an ecclesiastical manor until the 18th century.
This listed site corresponds to the ancient village of Rodén, a place with an interesting history spanning from Antiquity to the present, marked by a strong Islamic influence in its urban design with architecturally relevant elements such as the castle of Rodén and the church of San Martín.

The ancient village of Rodén is perched on a hill at an altitude of 300 meters affording views over the Ginel River valley, which flows into the Ebro River just northeast of the town. Its dwellings and other buildings used for secondary purposes are arranged in a terraced fashion on the north side of the hill.

During the Spanish Civil War (1936 – 1939) it was the backdrop for a number of historic battles. As a result, the town sustained serious damage.

In the summer of 1937 the village of Rodén was completely destroyed when all the wood construction elements (window frames, doors, beams, etc.) were broken apart. The Republican troops needed construction materials to shore up their trenches and the front line in Belchite, where the battle raged throughout the summer.
After the war ended, the Department of Devastated Regions designed a new town on the sloping hillside at the foot of the original ruins on the Ginel River plains, next to the highway and the future high-speed railway.

The ancient village of Rodén now offers a landscape of ruins, giving visitors a glimpse of the panorama of the early years of the war and the successive events on the Belchite front, as well as the destiny of the inhabitants who decided to return to their devastated village to start a new life in the new one.

Ancient Rodén is one of six villages in Spain that were not rebuilt after the Civil War, opting instead to build a new town near the devastated ruins. These six villages (Valdeanchete, Montarron and Gajanejos in the province of Guadalajara, Belchite and Rodén in the province of Zaragoza and Corbera de Ebro in the province of Tarragona) bear witness to the devastation sustained during the war. Only Belchite, Rodén and Corbera de Ebro have preserved the ruins of their monuments.


Restoration, 20th to 21st century

By the early 20th century, the town had just 209 inhabitants, all of whom were devoted to agriculture. The existence of these residents was cut short by the war that devastated Spain from 1936 to 1939.

The new town was founded at the foot of the ruins, in the shadow of the former village, on the Ginel River plains. Since the 1970s, it has been considered a district of Fuentes de Ebro, located 3 km away.

Projects and interventions



Declaration, 20th century

The Official Gazette of Aragon (BOA) from April 21, 2017 published Decree 53/2017, of April 11, by the Government of Aragon, declaring the ancient village of Rodén, in the municipality of Fuentes de Ebro (Zaragoza), an Asset of Cultural Interest in the Cultural Interest Complex category, Historical Site type.

Ancient village of Rodén

C/ Mayor, 17
50741 Rodén (Zaragoza)

Visit Fuentes de Ebro

City Hall: 976 169 100

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