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Murcia

city and trees

MURCIA. The capital of the Province of Mureia, in Southeastern Spain. It lies on both banks of the Segura River, in the beautiful valley known as the Buerta or 'Garden' of Murcia (Map: Spain, E 4). This valley rivals in the luxuriance of its vegetation the famous Vega of Granada. It was carefully irrigated by the Moors. and is covered with vineyards and groves of mulberry, olive, and fig trees. The city itself has narrow streets, but a clean and generally neat appearance. Several promenades and pleasure grounds have been laid out along the embank ments of the river. and the I'aseo de Florida blanea is a wide avenue with fine rows of plane trees. Though the city still retains sonic of its old Moorish atmosphere, it has preserved but few objects of interest. The only building which at tracts considerable notice is the cathedral, a Gothic-Romanesque structure begun in the four teenth century. Its facade in the baroque style

dates from the eighteenth century, and its tower, the most interesting feature, was begun in 1522 and completed in 1766. Other prominent build ings are the imposing bishop's palace, the city hall, with a monumental fašade, the Coleg,io de San Fulgencio, two theatres, a bull ring, and the large and well-built silk factories. There are a provincial museum, two normal schools, and a secondary school. The industries are large ly derived from the surrounding Imerta, the chief being the silk industry, which, with grain and fruit, furnishes the principal articles of trade. There are also manufactures of woolen goods, gunpowder, soap, leather, hats, and musical in struments. The population in 1887 was 98,538, and in 1900, 111,693.