The traces of human settlement can be up to the Paleolithic, ie traced back to 6000 years BC. Most likely, the first settlers arrived in small boats from the French Mediterranean coast, the Balearic Islands, Corsica and Sardinia. The earliest reference to the existence of settlers is dated 3 Century BC
More detailed information about the prehistory of Majorca was the archeology us with their modern tools in fact only in recent decades. According to current knowledge we divided them into the Vortalayotikum (between 2000 and 1500 BC) and the Talayotic (between 1500 and 123 BC). This is consistent with our Vortalayotikum Neolithic and early Bronze Age. His progress seen in selbsterbauten caves, fortified shelters and grave chambers. Towards the end of Vortalayotikums the burial took place not in chamber tombs, but in so-called navetas. These megalithic tombs were named after their ship-like outline, and reached dimensions of up to 25 meters (Son Oms Vell in Palma).
Whether it was Mallorca - Menorca like - temporarily settled by the Phoenicians, remains doubtful. It is probable that the aborigines were able, thanks to their formidable slingshots colonization by the Phoenicians and later prevented by the Greeks and Carthaginians. Referring to the Greek name "Baliarides" throw (ballein = throw) for the stone thrower was the island group from now on "Balearic Islands". This did not prevent the islanders out driving with the Greeks, trade or hire themselves out as mercenaries.
Only in the year 123 BC, the Romans succeeded, Mallorca and his Nachbarinsein after a bitter resistance to take possession. One of the main reasons for the Roman invasion was the increasing piracy of Mallorquins. From the Bay of AIcudia the Roman troops were advancing towards Palma, where they finally won 122 BC. Today, it still remembers the name of the island's capital (Palmaria =) palm. Roman origin, are also Pollentia (today AIcudia), Capdepera, Manacor, Campos, Alaro, and the Castell del Rei. Remains of Roman buildings found in Alcudia,) of the former island capital (Teatro Romano, southern parts of the city fortifications. Also, the Puente Romano (Roman Bridge, Roman bridge, recalls) in Pollenca at that time. The following centuries were largely peaceful. Introduced by the Romans, olives and wine culture and the ceramics helped the islanders to prosperity. The name "Balearic" originally referred only to the islands of Majorca and Menorca, from which the Romans more than "Balearis Insula Maior of the smaller" Insula Balearis Menor distinguished.
Already in the 3rd Century AD, began to spread Christianity in Majorca. Many Roman temples were converted into churches, and even the catacombs of San Marti in Alcudia are reminiscent of the early Christian. The peaceful period ended in 425, as first the Vandals arrived with their ships .... . Toward the end of time, however, the Vandals began a cruel persecution of Christians, which in turn led the year 534 the Byzantine emperor Justinian to reconquer Mallorca.
The first signs of the Arab claim to rule announced themselves at 707, but ships to expire by the Moroccan coast Kaperfahrten to Mallorca and tried for almost 200 years the island was conquered, until arrived in 902 AD the whole island in Arab possession. The destroyed by the Vandals Pollentia was rebuilt, renamed in Alcudia and made the capital of Mallorca. The subsequent 300 years Arab government not only brought Mallorca economic prosperity, but also an unparalleled cultural enrichment. Even today, reminiscent of the Arab art irrigation terraces at Estellencs and Banyalbufar, but also the wind-powered water pumps in the lowlands of Palma and Sa Pobla. Today the landscape of Mallorca, so typical almond, peach and citrus fruit plantations are also of Arab origin. New cities sprang up all over Mallorca, and many have maintained until the present their Arabic names, such as Alaro, Banyalbufar, Algaida and the aforementioned city of Alcudia. In defense of the island, many castles were built, whose ruins are now popular tourist attractions (Castell de Alaro, Castell del Rei, and the citadels of Santueri and Capdepera).
Already in the 8th C. made in northern Spain, the beginning of the Reconquista, the Christian reconquest, noticeable. After liberation from the Arab domination united Catalonia, Valencia, Provence and Roussillon to the new Kingdom of Aragon. Far-reaching consequences for the Mallorcan history had left the crown in 1213 when King Jaime I of Aragon. One of his main goals was the reconquest of the Balearic Islands and the destruction of all pirate bases. This project he realized in 1229 with the deployment of a powerful navy, which eventually reconquered Majorca.
After the death of Jaime I, the empire was divided. James II in 1276 raised the Balearic Islands to independent kingdom and brought it to a new golden age. Palma was soon able to compete as a commercial and port city of Genoa and Barcelona. The growing power of Majorca had conflicts with Aragon revived. After many battles, the Balearic islands were finally returned to the Kingdom of Aragon.
The plague of 1375 and 1384 was again a large proportion of this population is a victim. Whole tracts of land desolate, and agriculture virtually came to a halt. As a wealthy city people bought up large tracts of land and created the still existing large estates, which comprises about 30% of the island. At that time most of the olive groves reminiscent of their ancient trees. Soon after the conquest of the Kingdom of Aragon, Majorca promoted economic development through trade privileges. Palma grew rapidly to a major transhipment point between the eastern and western Mediterranean Sea. More than 400 commercial vessels were based in Palma. Many of the magnificent medieval buildings in the city center still reflected today against the former prosperity. With consequences for Mallorca was the discovery of America, because now shifted to trade in the Andalusian port cities.
After the victory over the Algerian-Turkish navy in 1571 once again spread wealth from the cities. During the growing prosperity in the cities, spreading across the country, great poverty. Famine broke out and many villages were abandoned and became dilapidated. In that era was distinguished from the present settlement. At the fortress-like estates with their own chapels Manors (Bàlitx d'abaix arisen, courts in Ternellestal), embedded in long-range olive and almond tree plantations. In the remote mountain villages such as Fornalutx remained, however, the original village structure, with its small farms to this day largely intact.
Early 18 Mallorca century was hit by acts of war. Despite ending the War of Spanish Succession (1701-05), the fighting continued. It was not until the Peace of Utrecht in 1713 clarified the ownership between Spain and England: Mallorca was Spanish, while Minorca fell to the British. In the late 18th Century stood out for Mallorca profound economic changes. 1778 in Palma, the "Sociedad Económica de Amigos de Pais" was founded, made the great service to the promotion of agriculture and education very much. The cultivation of potatoes, flax and citrus fruits has been forced to meet the demand on the European mainland. The Mallorcan merchant again grew to several hundred sailing ships and cruised on all the oceans.
The 19th Century, the gentry fell into a severe crisis. The already heavily indebted state also lost his farm workers who migrated to America seeking better working conditions or in the emerging industry. Many had to sell their lands, which led to a further concentration of land ownership. A catastrophic blight epidemic destroyed almost all the vineyards in 1890 in Mallorca, forcing agriculture to changes in cropping patterns. The vineyard at Banyalbufar and Estellencs came to a standstill, and only new resistant varieties from California, led to the revival of the wine cultures around Santa Maria del Cami, Consell, Felanitx and Binisalem. In other regions, especially in the east of the island, gave way to the vast wine-growing almond tree plantations. In the valley of Sóller spread, however, the orange crop, thanks to rising demand, especially from Germany and France on an area of 10,000 hectares. By draining the swamp vast plains in the north and south of Mallorca were obtained for small farmers in settlement areas, still remember what the relikthaften wetlands of Albufera d'es and Salines Salobrar.
Already towards the end of the last century, Mallorca was discovered by tourism. First, foreign retirees looking to the Mediterranean island to enjoy the beautiful weather of spring and autumn months. Improved ferry services and the emergence of nautical tourism made the number of holidaymakers are continuously rising, the statistics reported in 1935, almost 50 000 overnight stays. In Palma (Ca'n Pastilla Ca's Catala) and Cala d'Or, created the first holiday hotels. The Spanish Civil War and the subsequent Second World War hindered the upward trend of tourism. 1936, it at Porto Cristo and Manacor between Franco's troops and the Republicans losing battles. The civil war spread over the whole island and brought great suffering among the civilian population. Thanks to the neutrality of Spain Mallorca remained untouched by the devastation of the Second World War. The repression under the Franco dictatorship, however, increased, any cultural autonomy was suppressed and the island language Mallorquin prohibited. Soon after the war began to emerge in Mallorca a steep upward trend of tourism. The number of tourists soared from 127 000 (1950) to over 6 million in 1988, making the rise of tourism to Mallorca's most important economic factor is the most impressive shows. The year 1981 was for the Balearic Islands of historical importance. The new constitution approved the Archipelago to an autonomous status. 1983 Mallorca gained its independence back in 1349 lost widely. This is most evident in the cultural field: one remembers growing on old traditions. Publishers and newspapers publish again in mallorquí, places and streets retain their old names. Spanish is increasingly pushed into the background. Thanks to mutual tolerance are taking place, the recent movement toward autonomy in contrast to the Basque Country without serious problems.
The emergence of Mallorca
Majorca is an island of 3,600 square kilometers and has its origins in a complex morphotektonischen history. Particularly striking are the two mountain and hill regions, which are outstanding in the northwest and southeast, without further transitional zone from the central level. The largest part of the central layer is covered with red soil.
The genesis of the island covers a period from 300 million years, ranging from carbon, the coal age, the deserts of the red sandstone and the state of the offshore Mesozoic to the Tertiary salt deserts, and still later, torrential rains of recent geological history. The origin of the morphotektonischen structure of the Balearic island chain corresponds to an Alpine blueprint. The Balearic Islands are a fragment of a zirkummediterranen alpidischen folding mountain system, which takes as an extensive mountain arc of the Cordillera of southern Spain or edit this far juts into the Mediterranean Sea. Orographic Malloca has a threefold division, which constitutes a clear and scenic drives all over the island clearly emerges. The entire western and northwestern part of Mallorca takes the main mountain range, the Serra de Tramuntana book. It is the only mountain on the island, which closed with its high margin over 1000m the views of the sea. The Serra de Tramuntana increases the Puig Major, Mallorca's highest peak, down to 1445m up. Here the mountains of steep gorges appear cut some wild canyons. The counterpart to this is in the east, the Serra de Levante. Here, too, rising mountains, but just reach an altitude of 561m, and not dominated by far by the same rudeness are characterizing the main mountain. Nestling between the two mountains or hills, the Mallorcan wide, in places undulating plains landscape unit is as central: it pla. The plane, which consists largely of marine deposits of the Tertiary and the detritus of the mountains will protrudes only two places of large hills complexes. The oldest rocks found in the western mountains of Mallorca, seen particularly well on the steep and rugged coastal cliffs. With the discovery of dark shales and sandstones of the Carboniferous period until a few years ago, could finally be said with certainty that the Balearic islands actually have a joint development and represent a continuation of Betica Cordilleras. Previously we only knew these ancient rocks from the neighboring island of Majorca, Minorca. The question may arise whether Menorca has pushed up from a different region of the Mediterranean, is now understood (Bäsemann 1994:88).
The northern mountains of Serra and Serra de Levante, and the towering hills complexes of the central zone consisting of Mesozoic limestone, mostly of the Jurassic, 180 million years ago. The island is to calcify to 90 percent. Even under the Tertiary and Quaternary deposits of the Central Plains today is limestone. Before the great continental shifts of the late Mesozoic presented the island as a large flat surface sediments. By elemental forces of the Earth's Majorca has been compressed and is thereby reduced by at least 55 percent. The deposits of the Jura übereinandergeschoben were literally torn to pieces and multiple. The result was the uplift of the mountainous and hilly formations today. Cap de Formentor, where the folds saddles again descend below sea level and is showing ledges of special scenic beauty, which can be several hundred meters thick, rock packages übereinandergeglittenen observed particularly well. In the Tertiary the lower areas of the island were completely submerged. The rocks of the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous were overlaid by the deposits of the younger Tertiary. Caused by heavy rainfall of the Quaternary huge amounts of debris were mainly transported from the northern Serra in the plains, the cracks and canyons of these mountains have been (further deepened Winkler 1926). Furthermore, the dissolved in rainwater, and so also in the ground water contained large amounts of lime to carbon dioxide, leading to the karstification of the mountain and hill regions of the island led. The prominent location, the large jointed, purity and potency of the limestone increased the Verkarstungsfähigkeit.In the various caves, especially in the area of the Serra de Levante, in fertile, filled hollows (called Polje of the main ridge and the bizarre landscape truck) which, however, locally is limited to find the karst features their special characteristics.
On the side facing the interior of the main mountain range is first noticed little of the karstification. Striking bare karst is completely absent. In extensive areas Pinuswälder stand, partly covered with oak areas. Only in the central area of the chains is striking that many Polje occur in which agriculture is possible, because they are filled with (red), earth and debris and the soil structure is able to store water. It is a special feature of the coastal mountains that suddenly, at altitudes above 500 m is an, albeit limited arable area appears with individual farms, while in the deeper layers are possible only in some valleys of farming terraces of almond trees and olives. Particularly striking here is the truck landscape. The karst hills of the north has here give rise to a bizarre world of forms, reminiscent in its sharp and pointed Karrengraten karst formations, which have always broken down into the finest grooves solution to small forms of tropical karst. The individual carts are several meters high and run conically upwards. They stand close together and let the individual limestone beds seen, from which they have been identified. Particularly impressive are those forms in the vicinity of the street, the mountains of the Inca trail crosses the foothills to the coast at La Calobra, so close to the famous monastery of Lluc. Similar forms are found on the limestone directly on the rocky coast of the bay of Sa Calobra. On the south side is turned towards the interior of the island, were identical forms found nowhere. The rationale is that the mountain side is much drier than the coastal side that catches almost all niederschlagsbringenden winds from westerly and northwesterly direction.
As in many parts of the Mediterranean countries, it is also in Mallorca, the terra rossa widespread. The limestone formed over the terra rossa is characterized by its distinctive red color, which is the central foreign soil. The bulk of the vast central plain is covered with terra rossa. Particularly is that this red soil cover is not resting on the bedrock, but can be clearly recognized as the transported soil. Also in Schuttdecken on the slopes it is found in storage. It is clear from a number of profiles that the terra rossa is herabgewandert together with the Hangschuttdecken and today still partially on the slopes themselves, but is mostly in the hollows and plains of the island. Even in the hills of the Serra de Levante, the slopes are usually free from a powerful land cover. On the east coast of the island of debris in the waste of rich lateritic soils of the Serra d'Arta down to the sea in the Bay of Canyamel down. On the beach through the surf line Roterdeschutt of such waves is completely solidified and preserved as a bank, looks out the step-out of the sand. No doubt there may be only fossil red soil. Even more striking than in the Schuttdecken one finds the terra rossa in the coastal mountain range in the wide valleys and especially in the big Polje. They are everywhere, with ruins of the limestone and predominantly populated Toterde. The red soil, which was taken from the weathered material and soil formation on the adjacent slopes and transported along with the rubble in the Polje, now forms the basis for a valuable crop in the mountains, while starting up from the plane at altitudes of 500m above sea level is not exists