Los Ausines

Los Ausines

Quintanilla, San Juan y Sopeña are the districts that make up Los Ausines. They are located at the shadow of a calcareous large rock along the bank of the river Ausín, and the three of them own a past that goes back to the prehistory.


About 2300 years ago a group of Celtiberian natives, belonging to the Preroman tribe of Turmogos, chose the guarded cliffs of El Castillejo to raise one of their strongholds. Some remains of the stone walls they raised in the most accessible zones can still be seen today, but they were not enough to stop the legion attacks that conquered this region. When Romans arrived, Los Ausines area became very important as it was located near the populated and Romanized area of Lara. Besides t here was a Roman road parallel to Los Ausines river, which connected Clunia with the Arlanzón valley.


Visigoths and Arabs inhabited Los Ausines as well. Arabs withdrew due to the pressure of the northern Christians that erected a small fortress at the end of the 11th century, reusing prehistoric materials, on the top of El Castillejo. This castle was the origin of a high medieval alfoz (area) mentioned for the first time in 972. It is also likely that Sancha de Ausines, married to the powerful earl Fernán González, was born here. If Los Ausines was a part of Castrojeriz merindad (region) in the 13th century, in the next century the documentary importance of this area is held by the monastery of Benedictine nuns of Santa Apolonia. At that time it owned as well some legacy of the king’s hospital in Burgos.


This historic past has left its mark in the houses of the three districts of this village. Beside the well preserved popular architecture, where the influence of the sierra house is evident, we should point out the Romanesque elements preserved in the church of Santa Eulalia in Quintanilla district, the shrine of Nuestra Señora del Castillo in San Juan district, and the church of San Miguel in Sopeña district. Beyond some purely historic aspects, it is a unique village due to the fact of being divided in three well defined districts. Elderly people say it is due to the fact that the land the three districts occupy belonged to a man with three sons and when he died it was inherited by them being divided in three equal parts. They did not get well with each other and each one of them decided to begin a new life separated from the other, for this reason each one built a house and lived in a different place of the village. That could be the origin of the three districts we know today: Quintanilla, San Juan and Sopeña, each developed on its own, but belonging to the same village of Los Ausines. But this is just a history told in the village; if it is true or not, who knows?


The fact is that Los Ausines is made up of three districts, as if they were independent villages, but at the same time they share common elements, like the shrine of the Virgen del Castillo, where the festivity of the Cruz de Mayo is celebrated on 3rd Mai.

Each district owns its church and patron saint, therefore each district celebrates its own festivity:

- Quintanilla, Santa Eulalia

- San Juan, San Juan

- Sopeña San Miguel.


Although they are not used any longer, each district had got its own school (the one of Quintanilla is being used now as the town council, medical center, etc.). They closed in the course of the time due to the lack of children, being the school of Quintanilla the last one to close and where the children of the three districts went to before it closed.


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