Las Médulas

Las Médulas

Las Médulas (As Médulas or As Meduas in Galician language) is a historical site near the town of Ponferrada in the region of El Bierzo (province of León, Castile and León, Spain), which used to be the most important gold mine in the Roman Empire. Las Médulas Cultural Landscape is listed by the UNESCO as one of the World Heritage Sites.

The spectacular landscape of Las Médulas resulted from the ruina montium, a Roman mining technique described by Pliny the Elder in 77 AD. The technique employed was a type of hydraulic mining which involved undermining a mountain with large quantities of water. The water was supplied by interbasin transfer. At least seven long aqueducts tapped the streams of the La Cabrera district (where the rainfall in the mountains is relatively high) at a range of altitudes. The same aqueducts were used to wash the extensive gold deposits.

The area Hispania Tarraconensis had been invaded in 25 BC by the emperor Augustus. Prior to the Roman conquest the indigenous inhabitants obtained gold from alluvial deposits. Large-scale production did not begin until the second half of the 1st century AD.

Outline
Las Médulas (As Médulas or As Meduas in Galician language) is a historical site near the town of Ponferrada in the region of El Bierzo (province of León, Castile and León, Spain), which used to be the most important gold mine in the Roman Empire.

Recommended world heritage video

  1. Cathedral, Alcázar and Archivo de Indias in Seville

    Cathedral, Alcázar and Archivo de Indias in Seville

  2. Lugo

    Lugo

  3. Historic Site of Lyons

    Historic Site of Lyons

  1. Warszawa

    Warszawa

  2. Alhambra

    Alhambra

  3. Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes

    Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes

  1. San Millán Yuso and Suso Monasteries

    San Millán Yuso and Suso Monasteries

  2. Porto Venere

    Porto Venere

  3. Late Baroque Towns of the Val di Noto

    Late Baroque Towns of the Val di Noto

  1. Monasteries of Haghpat and Sanahin

    Monasteries of Haghpat and Sanahin

  2. Medieval Town of Torun

    Medieval Town of Torun

  3. Ensemble of the Ferrapontov Monastery

    Ensemble of the Ferrapontov Monastery

  1. Historic Walled Town of Cuenca

    Historic Walled Town of Cuenca

  2. Limes

    Limes

  3. Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar

    Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar

  1. Churches of Peace in Jawor and Swidnica

    Churches of Peace in Jawor and Swidnica

  2. Wartburg Castle

    Wartburg Castle

  3. The Loire Valley between Sully-sur-Loire and Chalonnes

    The Loire Valley between Sully-sur-Loire and Chalonnes

  1. Upper Middle Rhine Valley

    Upper Middle Rhine Valley

  2. Central Zone of the Town of Angra do Heroismo in the Azores

    Central Zone of the Town of Angra do Heroismo in the Azores

  3. The Wadden Sea

    The Wadden Sea

  1. Historic Centre of Riga

    Historic Centre of Riga

  2. La Lonja de la Seda de Valencia

    La Lonja de la Seda de Valencia

  3. Tower of London

    Tower of London

  1. Old Town of Regensburg with Stadtamhof

    Old Town of Regensburg with Stadtamhof

  2. Ironbridge Gorge

    Ironbridge Gorge

  3. Old City of Zamość

    Old City of Zamość

  1. Parco Nazionale del Cilento, Vallo di Diano e Alburni

    Parco Nazionale del Cilento, Vallo di Diano e Alburni

  2. Citadel, Ancient City and Fortress Buildings of Derbent

    Citadel, Ancient City and Fortress Buildings of Derbent

  3. Pitons, cirques and remparts of Reunion Island

    Pitons, cirques and remparts of Reunion Island

  1. Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Former Abbey of Saint-Remi and Palace of Tau, Reims

    Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Former Abbey of Saint-Remi and Palace of Tau, Reims

  2. Lavaux, Vineyard Terraces

    Lavaux, Vineyard Terraces

  3. Ilulissat Icefjord

    Ilulissat Icefjord

  1. Costiera Amalfitana

    Costiera Amalfitana

  2. Alhambra, Generalife and Albayzin, Granada

    Alhambra, Generalife and Albayzin, Granada

  3. Mont-Saint-Michel and its Bay

    Mont-Saint-Michel and its Bay

  1. The Four Lifts on the Canal du Centre and their Environs, La Louvière and Le Roeulx (Hainault)

    The Four Lifts on the Canal du Centre and their Environs, La Louvière and Le Roeulx (Hainault)

  2. Gough and Inaccessible Islands

    Gough and Inaccessible Islands

  3. Abbey and Altenmünster of Lorsch

    Abbey and Altenmünster of Lorsch

facebook comments
Comment
To the Top