Ferrol military batteries (A Coruña)
A scientific journey through its defensive history
¿Por qué es interesante este Destino?
Why is this Destination interesting?
Galicia has been, since ancient times, the dream of expansion of many peoples: Celts, Romans or Swabians. The Vikings arrived on its shores in the 10th century and they were followed by the English and French. Its ports became strategic enclaves for the defense of the territory, but also for the international aspirations of what is now Spain.
The history of the Ferrol military batteries begins, then, even before they were projected. The conditions of the estuary, with a large opening in its mouth and a narrow central body that reopens inside into a large belly, led it to be designated by the military engineer Tiburcio Espannocchi as “one of the safest and most capable ”of welcoming the royal ships on their way north. Felipe II, whom Espannocchi served, designates Ferrol as the port of his Navy and with it begins the true development of the city, which will lead to the construction of great emblems such as the Arsenal and the A Graña Shipyard, already with Felipe V.
It was necessary to protect this delicate shelter, so Felipe II ordered the construction of a fortress that would bear his name at the end of the 16th century, right in the belt of the Ferrol estuary. The castle of San Felipe, accompanied by that of Palma and San Martín on the other side of the estuary, formed the first defensive trident in the area. With their crossfire they could attack enemy ships as soon as they entered the narrow estuary.
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