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Santa Cruz District

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Santa Cruz District


Basic Information

Location Sevilla, Spain
Country Spain
City Sevilla
Address Sevilla, Spain

General Information

Open to visitors no
Need appointment no
Handicap accessibility no
Geographical Coordinates 37.3853,-5.9894


Santa Cruz is the name currently given to part of the old Jewish quarter. Before 1248 the Jewish quarter of Moslems already occupied the Santa Cruz District as far as Carne Gate. References from the Almohad stage lend their names to the areas extending from Jerez gate to Carne Gate such as Barrio del Alcázar de la Bendición. A wall erected in medieval times granted the Jewish quarter a certain degree of independence. There is no record of said area being occupied by Jews since the Moslem time in the city though there is a tradition which tells us that when the city was conquered by Castile in 1248 the Almohads handed over the key to the city and the Jews the key to the Jewish quarter to King Fernando III. Although it is no more than a legend, the two keys kept in the Treasure of the cathedral do seem to confirm it. What is for sure is that once the city had been conquered, all the mosques were handed over to the church except for three which were granted to the Jews.

The relations between Jews and Christians were not always peaceful. The practice of usury brought about fear and suspicion in the rest of the population. The major attack which took place in 1391 put paid to the Jewish character of the district. The houses seized from the Jews were handed over to the Christians and the synagogues were converted into Christian churches which were given the names of San Bartolomé, Santa María la Blanca and Santa Cruz. The parish church of Santa Cruz where Murillo was buried was knocked down in the 19th century during the short period of French occupation. It was located in the current Santa Cruz square.

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