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The history of the island Ibiza

In 654 BC, Phoenician settlers founded a port in the Balearic Island, as Ibossim. It was later known to Romans as „Ebusus“. The Greeks called the two islands of Ibiza and Formentera as the Pityûssae. With the decline of Phoenicia after the Assyrian invasions, Ibiza came under the control of Carthage, also a former Phoenician colony. The island produced dye, salt, fish sauce, and wool.A shrine with offerings to the goddess Tanit was established in the cave at Es Cuieram, and the rest of the Balearic Islands entered Eivissa’s commercial orbit after 400 BC. Ibiza was a major trading post along the Mediterranean routes. Ibiza began establishing its own trading stations along the nearby Balearic island of Majorca, such as Na Guardis, where numerous Balearic mercenaries hired on, no doubt as slingers,to fight for Carthage.

After the Carthaginian time comes the Roman domination. During this period Ibiza carries the title of Confederate City. The next five centuries are called „dark centuries“ due to the few information left. The island was owned by the Barbarians and the Byzantine until the year 711 when Arabic land on the Island and call it „Yebisah“.

After the fall of the Western Roman Empire and a brief period of first Vandal and then Byzantine rule, the island was conquered by then Moors in 990, the few remaining locals converted to Islam and Berber settlers came in.

Under Islamic rule, Ibiza came in close contact with the city of Denia —the closest port in the nearby Iberian peninsula, located in the Valencian Community —and the two areas were administered jointly by the Taifa of Denia.

Ibiza together with the islands of Formentera and Minorca were invaded by the Norwegian king Sigurd I of Norway in the spring of 1110 on his crusade to Jerusalem. The king had previously conquered the cities of Sintra, Lisbon and given them over to Christian rulers, in an effort to weaken the Muslim grip on the Iberian peninsula.

The island was conquered by the Aragonese King James I in 1235. The local Muslim population got deported as was the case with neighboring Majorca and elsewhere, and Christians arrived from Girona. The island maintained its own self-government in several forms until 1715, when King Philip V of Spain abolished the local government’s autonomy. The arrival of democracy in the late 1970s led to the Statute of Autonomy of the Balearic Islands.

Today, the island is part of the Balearic Autonomous Community, along with Majorca, Minorca, and Formentera.

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