You must login to use this function.



Castillo de Jimena

, Jimena

During the late Middle Ages the castle of Jimena played an important defensive role, together with other castles in Sierra Mágina, against the Nasrid kingdom of Granada. In 1434 it was handed over to the Order of Calatrava, which reformed its defenses and especially the keep. Its keep is square, built in masonry and corner ashlars, and has a careful internal organization on two floors covered with ribbed vaults, as well as a basement.

From the end of the 9th century, Jimena was part of a series of scattered farmsteads held by the Banu Habil, Muladi rebels who stood up to the authority of the emir 'Abd Allah.

Due to its proximity to Granada, the Almohads and Nasrid, successively conquered and fortified it.

Jimena was conquered by Fernando III in 1234 and integrated into the lands of the Council of Baeza. In 1284 it became the property of Don Pedro Ruy de Berrio.

The castle of Jimena replaced that of Garcíez from the 13th century, from which it is four kilometers from that of Garcíez. After the Almohads snatched Garcíez from Martín Gordillo, the Christians realized the need to replace the old Muslim fortress with a more modern and defensible one and built that of Jimena.

In addition, the displacement of this strategic point would be given by the need to control the route that coming from the Jandulilla basin, skirted the northern foothills of the Aznaitín in search of the plains of Mancha Real.

In 1364 Jimena was the lordship of Herranz Rodríguez, from which it passed seven years later, to María Gracia de Godoy, the wife of Sancho Díaz de Torres, ahead of Cazorla. At the end of the XIV, (1397), it was dukedom of Ruy López Dávalos.

On an undetermined date, after 1401, it was conquered by the Muslims, in whose power it remained until 1431 when Pedro García de Herrera managed to conquer it by surprise, with a night climb. Three years later, King Juan II created the Encomienda de la Orden de Calatrava and Don Luis de Guzmán was appointed master. The Order of Calatrava reformed its defenses and especially the keep.

The Muslims won it again in a short time and lost it again in 1457, won by Enrique IV who gave it to the Order of Calatrava, in whose power it remained for a few years. In 1462 the king handed it over to Don Beltrán de la Cueva.

In the 16th century, Jimena, along with Baeza, participated in the community conflict in the Castile of Carlos V, even serving as a hidden stronghold for community members. After these events, it was sold by Emperor Carlos V to his secretary, Don Francisco de los Cobos, expropriating it from the Calatrava knights.

From this date Jimena was the dominion of Don Francisco de los Cobos and after his descendants the Marquises of Camarasa, until the extinction of the manorial privileges in 1812.

In 1985 the castle of Jimena was declared a Site of Cultural Interest.


The only remarkable remainder of the Jimena castle is its keep, with a square base and twenty meters high, it was built by the Christians, at the end of the 13th century or at the beginning of the 14th century, with regular masonry and ashlar chains in the corners. The tower is preserved mocha and with the corners reinforced by ashlars arranged with rope and brand.

The keep has a careful internal organization on two floors covered with rib vaults. On the second floor it has three molded bays with bars, in addition, it has a basement that could be identified with the cistern.

Its facade, somewhat irregular, opens with a semicircular arch on fluted pilasters. It exhibits the shields of the Marquis of Camarasa, successors of the Cobos family, who owned it since the end of the 18th century.

The entrance to the castle is identified with the arch of the Council, covered with a barrel vault and supported on the keep.

The characteristic exterior military appearance of the Calatrava fortifications, contrasts with the palatial aesthetics and the interior distribution of the two floors decorated to the Gothic-Mudejar taste as shown by the semi-columns with vegetal capitals.

Once its military function was lost, the Jimena castle was used for some time as an olive mill, in addition to having been used as a family home.

Some vestiges of wall canvases are conserved very hidden by the farmhouse, some of them from the Islamic period.

It may interest you