Ebro

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The Ebro (Spanish, pronounced [ˈeβɾo]) or Ebre (Catalan, pronounced [ˈeβɾə] or [eβɾe]) is Spain's most voluminous river. Its source is in Fontibre (Cantabria). It flows through cities such as Miranda de Ebro (Castile and Leon), Logroño (La Rioja), Zaragoza (Aragon), and the Catalan cities of Flix, Tortosa, and Amposta before discharging in a delta on the Mediterranean Sea in the province of Tarragona.

Contents

Name

The Romans named this river Iber (Iberus Flumen), hence its current name (but probably derives from the Greek Hèvros, Ἑβρος). Arguably the whole peninsula and some of the peoples living there were named after the river.[1]

History

In antiquity, the Ebro was used as the dividing line between Roman (north) and Carthaginian (south) expansions after the First Punic War (264-241 BC). When Rome, fearful of Hannibal's growing influence in the Iberian Peninsula, made the city of Saguntum (considerably south of the Ebro) a protectorate of Rome, Hannibal viewed the treaty as an aggressive action by Rome and used the event as the catalyst to the Second Punic War.

One of the earliest Cistercian monasteries in Spain, Real Monasterio de Nuestra Señora de Rueda (Royal Monastery of Our Lady of the Wheel), is located on the banks of the Ebro in Aragon. Established in AD 1202, the edifice survives intact. The monastery is strongly connected to the Ebro, since it used one of the first large waterwheels built for the production of power in Spain. The monastery also diverted flow from the Ebro to create a circulating, hydrological central heating system for its buildings.

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