“Hi! I am from Spain and I am Castilian.”

Posted on September 23rd, 2011 by

I met this guy from Madrid and that was how he introduced himself and I found it interesting. Castilian is the word used to describe people from Castile. Castile is not a city but one of the five old kingdoms that constituted Spain, the coats of arms of which still appear on the flag of Spain. It was a long history before these kingdoms united and became the Kingdom of Spain. Due to warfare between Christians, Muslims, Jews and the Moors in the Iberian Peninsula, people in Spain have different origins and to them, it is important to introduce exactly where they are from and how they want to be considered. I think it is fair to say that Spanish people are one of the most patriotic people in the world!

Here are some pictures of “Alcázar” in Sevilla. It is a royal palace that was first built by the Moors.


The ceiling in one of the room in “Alcázar”, if you look closely, you can see the symbols of a lion and a castle. Those are the only two kingdoms in Spain at the time – “Castile” and “León”

Never the less, people in Spain love where they live and they only live where they love. My host mom is from Osuna but now she lives here because she loves Sevilla and she can talk all day about how much she does. A few days ago I was at a bar with a group of friends and we were talking to these two Spanish guys. Both of them are from Sevilla but one of them has been studying in Valencia for five years. A friend of mine ask those two which city is better, Sevilla or Valencia. My friend sort of regretted asking that because the conversation between those two took forever. My Spanish vocabulary was not good enough to fully understand what they said but from their expression and excitement, I could totally tell how much they love their cities.

The "Betis" River

Sevilla is a big city; compared to Madrid or Barcelona, Sevilla is considered small, but yet it is the city with two soccer clubs in “La Liga” (or The League – the top professional soccer league in Spain) – Sevllia F.C and Real Betis. They used to be one but they decided to separate and be rivals! The city of Sevilla has part of the Guadalquivir River running through, dividing the city into two parts. All the attractions and major business of Sevilla are on one side of the river and on the other side is the neighborhoods of Triana and Los Remedios, where I live and some other neighborhoods. People call this side the Triana side. I did a walking tour once and they guide told me that people in Triana have some of their own customs and activities that are different from the rest of Sevilla and they like to be considered differently.  Some people also said that only in Triana can you find the best flamenco singers. The idea of wanting to have a different identity was part of the reason to the split of Sevilla F.C and Betis. Betis in the Roman name for the Guadalquivir River. Before I came to Spain, I knew that soccer is a big here and I thought most of the people would be fans of big soccer clubs such as Real Madrid or F.C. Barcelona but that was not all right. Sevilla people from one side of the river only support Sevilla F.C. and people from the Triana side like my señora’s family, only watch Betis.

A closer look of the event. Excuse the bad quality of my camera!

While walking with friends this one night, I saw these people on the streets celebrating a holy event that was said to be in Triana only.


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