Huesca temática

Number 111 - August of 2007Spanish language Principal menu

Arguis village

Picturesque and refreshing
stop for the traveler

      It's a place in the county of Huesca, next to the reservoir of the same name, on the Isuela river. Inhabitants: 80 (census in 2005). Altitude: 1.044 meters on the sea level. It's from Huesca 22 kilometers. Gentile: arguisano.
      You shall arrive for the highway of Sabiñánigo once Nueno is back -that couches to the left ascending for a hillside-, the waters of Isuela river are to the bottom, reflecting crystalline for a stony bed. The landscape crests picturesque, with the mountain of Gratal to a side and the one of the Eagle (Águila) to the other. At front, once in Arguis, they are those of Javierre, of San Salvador and of Belarre, with the port of Monrepós in the vertex, to 1.262 meters on the sea level. Below the town is, and neer the town the reservoir appears, majestic mirror where the summits look at themselves, exceptional panoramic that fastens in the traveler. To 22 kilometers from Huesca only, radically the perspective changes, the landscape is other.
      The reservoir takes advantage of the foz (hollow) of the Isuela river between the mountains of Gratal and the Eagle. The primitive dam dates of the XVIII century; and it is therefore, one of the oldest reservoirs in the Aragonese region. It was enlarged in 1929, because it was near to be blinded. It occupies a surface of 18 hectares and has a capacity of 3 cubic hectometres. Their waters are dedicated to the watering of the Valley of Huesca. The concession dates of the year 1336 in that Pedro IV the Ceremonious granted to the city of Huesca the waters of Isuela river, coming from Foz (hollow) of Arguis and Nueno. Later on, in 1680, in the article 164 of "Ordinaciones of the regiment of the conquering city of Huesca", it is already spoken of building a reservoir, such "as it was attempted in the past." They still lapsed many years until the project, edited by Francisco de Artigas, professor of the Sertoriana University, was materialized in the reality that all expected. The works concluded in 1704. The primitive dam measured 22 meters high for 12,90 of thickness. The enlarged project, in 1926 -the dam was raised five more meters- was elaborated by Lorenzo Pardo. In that way it is possible the watering of 2.500 hectares in the Valley (Hole) of Huesca.
     Arguis, a typical place, located in the salient of a bucolic hollow, continues being center vacationer. The town has extended to the areas of the plain, next to the reservoir, beside the highway. Modern constructions, with chalets prevalence, evidence the acceptance that has so exceptional place among people of all condition. As contrast, the urban center of the town conserves its rancid flavor, although have also been born it new buildings -the stone continues always presents- and others appear meetly restored. Remain still houses of two plants, with their corresponding loft, and covered with slate or stone tiles -losetas- and cylindrical chimney with the suggestive finishes off of espantabrujas (witch-frightener), constructions faithful to the popular Pyrenee's architecture. From the town the entirety of the reservoir is sighted. Below the Hostelry and the Lunchroom are.
      The parochial church is romanesque, of a single ship and with semicircular apse. It gives testimony of its origin, in spite of the reformations introduced in the XVII century. The tower lifts to the feet, of square plant; it consists of a single body, with large window to each side for the bells and finish off half spherical, with the help of small tiles.
     The temple is dedicated to San Miguel. In 1279 it was church of Prepositura de Huesca. Their more valuable altarpiece, attributed to the teacher of Arguis (Maestro de Arguis), is in the Prado Museum and is devoted to San Miguel Archangel, the holder of the parish. It is composed of two lateral streets, in those that San Miguel's appearance is represented in the Gargano mount (Apulia), according to the Golden Legend.

      This altarpiece was transferred by Savirón and Esteban to the Archaeological National Museum, in 1871, and there remained up to 1920 in that it passed to El Prado Museum. Of the teacher of Arguis is only known that he lived in the first half of the XV century, although it is ignored the exact date of his birth and death.
      The existent goldwork in the parochial of San Miguel corresponds to the XVII and XVIII centuries, since the temple was endowed fundamentally starting from the time of its reformation.
     The mariana invocation (Maria Virgin devotion) has its maximum exponent in Our Mrs. of Soldevilla whose hermitage, as the church, is also of invoice romanesque, with rectangular plant of three tracts.
     There are parties for the 22 of July. And also, September 29, in honor of San Miguel.
      In Arguis ended up adding more than 500 inhabitants, while now it is only about 80, if we must abide to the figures given in the last census. Of course, in fact always join more inhabitants, mainly during the Summer. It is also necessary to have present to the families that have their housing there for the weekends and vacations. It suits to remember Bentué de Rasal, added entity, with a census of 9 inhabitants in 1991.
      To Bentué we arrive for a track -asphalted today- that is born to the left of the highway, in a marked curve above of the entrance to Arguis. The union with Bentué de Rasal is relatively recent, because it dates of the decade of 1960-1970. Antonio Ubieto remembers that Arguis was village in 1076 and place in 1785.

 Another photograph

      Among the most important facts it is necessary to highlight the following ones: in June of 1198, Pedro II de Aragón give to the bishop Ricardo de Huesca the patronage right on the church of Arguis. Between 1228 and 1264, Fortún de Bergua promised Jaime I of Aragon and to its son Alfonso (for when he would be a king) that they would return the castles of Arguis and Sabayés if were returned to they two thousand morabetinos (a coin kind). December of 1255, 18, Jaime I of Aragon confirmed Fortún de Bergua the donation of Arguis and Sabayés. June of 1338, 13, Pedro IV of Aragon confirmed Blas Maza de Bergua the previous donation. They dominions were succeeding, and this way, in the XVI century, Durán Gudiol verifies that place was of Hugo Urriés. The secular dominion became present, in all ways, in 1785. In the documents of the time it is spoken of "the castles of Arguis and Sabayés." At the present time, regarding Arguis, remains of the old strength are not appreciated, in case there was it, in spite of it, the place had always a historical importance.
      In the South part ofthe town, an urbanization has arisen in that well aligned one-family houses prevail, of straight line streets that almost all look at the reservoir.
      But without a doubt, the beauty of the place constitutes the biggest attractiveness in the area, and it is logical to think in the conservation of the primitive urban nucleous, with all typical things, because the past is that confers more value to the present.


Alfonso Zapater, habitual consultado en esta sección.  Manuel Tomé  Ver fotografías de este artículo .... * Alfonso ZAPATER
* Manuel Tomé Bosqued

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