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Almond blossom in Moclinejo. SUR
Moclinejo: A two-eyed castle or simply a place
THE STORY BEHIND A PLACE NAME

Moclinejo: A two-eyed castle or simply a place

The phylloxera plague of the 1870s is said to have begun in the village before spreading rapidly throughout the rest of Malaga province

Jennie Rhodes

Moclinejo

Friday, 19 January 2024

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While the origin of the name Moclinejo is not clear, in documents dating back to the 15th and 16th centuries it appears as Moclinetum, Molinete, Moclinete, Mohinete or Molinillo.

Some historians have linked the name back to the Arabic 'hins al muklin' which means fortress of the two eyes.

However, the most cited explanation is that Moclinejo is derived from the Arabic 'Moclin', which means 'place' or 'district'.

During Spain's Islamic period, Moclinejo, along with Almáchar, El Borge and Cútar, formed a group of villages known as 'Las Cuatro Villas', whose privileges included the protection of Comares castle.

One of the most important events of the 15th century occurred in 1483, when the inhabitants of Moclinejo saw the arrival of the Castilian troops. The inhabitants are said to have left the castle and attacked the invaders from higher ground, surprising them and causing chaos among them, which led to many lost lives.

The places where the attack took place are still known today as 'Hoya de los Muertos' (valley of the dead) and 'Cuesta de la Matanza' (hill of the killing).

After the Reconquista, Moclinejo experienced a boom thanks to the exploitation of its vineyards, but they were destroyed during the phylloxera plague of the 1870s, which is said to have begun in the village and spread rapidly throughout the rest of the province of Malaga, wiping out much of the area's grape harvest.

However, the vineyards returned and nowadays part of the local economy is based on the production of sweet wine and raisins.

In fact Bodegas Dimobe (A. Muñoz Cabrera) is a family-run company that has been producing wines at its winery in Moclinejo since 1927, when Juan Muñoz Navarrete started the business with five, second-hand, old oak barrels. The Muñoz family still runs the business today.

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