Triana is probably the most emblematic neighborhood of Seville. On the other side of the river with respect to the rest of the city, it has managed to preserve certain features that have given it its own idiosyncrasy and identity within a profoundly Sevillian character.

You cannot say that you know Seville well if you have not been to Triana. In fact, despite being outside what used to be the city’s walled enclosure, a good part of the neighborhood belongs to its Historic Site, in recognition of its heritage and monumental values. But what makes a visit more essential is that the ways of life of a Sevillian neighborhood have been more clearly maintained here.

In the daily life of its people, belonging to Seville is intermingled with development in an environment that functions largely autonomously. It’s like living in a big city and in a smaller one, more town, at the same time.


As a basis for this idiosyncrasy, they wanted to find a remote, even legendary, origin in the Triana neighborhood. In this way, if Seville was founded by Hercules when going up the Guadalquivir on one of his trips, it is said that what the hero was looking for was the goddess Astarte, with whom he had fallen deeply in love. She, fleeing from him, took refuge on the other bank of the river, founding Triana there.

With this popular legend, Triana was equal to Seville itself in antiquity and illustrious foundation. There have been other somewhat more orthodox attempts to trace the neighborhood’s past to Antiquity. The most widespread is the etymological explanation of his name as a derivation of Traiana, referring to Trajan, the second-century Roman emperor born in nearby Itálica. This could refer to a first settlement in this area during this reign.

Other theories suggest that the name had resulted from the fusion of the Latin element ‘tri’ (three) with the Celtiberian ‘amna’ (river), alluding to the fact that the river was divided into three branches in this area. If the toponymy of the neighborhood goes back so far, it seems more likely that it comes from trans amnem, which would mean “on the other side of the river”. It would be an origin similar to that of the Roman neighborhood of Trastevere, from the Latin trans Tiberis, “on the other side of the Tiber”.

There are authors who have raised hypotheses that even trace the origin of the neighborhood beyond Trajan, to the time of Augustus. Strabo mentions that he distributed land among the legionnaires who had accompanied him in his wars in the north of the Peninsula and that he settled them around 19 BC. in Baitis, a city next to Híspalis. It has been wanted to see there a possible origin of Triana, as a Roman foundation differentiated from Seville.


However, the truth is that up to now archaeological excavations have only been able to trace the origin of the neighborhood back to the Middle Ages, specifically to the Muslim era, with the oldest testimonies around the 12th century.

Before, there may have been scattered houses and small craft production centers in the area, linked to the cultivation of the lands of the fertile Triana plain or the fishing activities in the Guadalquivir. However, the appearance of a population nucleus as such seems to have already occurred in the Islamic period and was mainly linked to two events.

The first of these was the construction in 1171 of the so-called Puente de Barcas, by order of the Almohad caliph Yusuf I. It was the first bridge that the city had and the only one until in 1852 the current bridge of Elizabeth II, seven centuries later. It was what is known as a floating bridge, consisting of ten boats linked with chains on which two wooden platforms were arranged that joined both platforms. It was a functional structure, although logically quite unstable and subject to the flooding of the river. In any case, it served to ensure the city’s supply from Aljarafe and was certainly an incentive for the growth of the population in Triana.

Shortly after, and probably to allow the defense of the new infrastructure, the castle that in Christian times would be known as the castle of San Jorge was built, in the place that is now occupied by the Triana market.


The first nucleus of the neighborhood was then developed around the Altozano. The new constructions would mean an improvement in security and communications, which would soon cause population growth in the area, with the consent of other industries that had a larger and cheaper space here than on the other side of the river.

In this way, we know that from very early times there were numerous pottery kilns. During the first centuries of Muslim Isbiliya, potters settled mainly around the south of Avenida de la Constitución and Puerta de Jerez. With the expansion of the palatial area of the Alcázar and its annexed fortifications, the transfer of these activities to a place further from the center was encouraged and it was then that many settled in Triana. You have to think that pottery was a very polluting industry at that time. Constantly active ovens were necessary with the consequent smoke, which the rulers of the city did not want near their residences.

It seems that they settled mainly between the current Pureza and Rodrigo de Triana streets, as archaeological evidence has been found at various points. For example, at number 98 of this second street, very close to the church of Santa Ana, an excavation in 2004 documented the existence of a pottery workshop from the Almoravid period (12th century), with several firing kilns. The pottery activity and its consequent ceramic derivation are thus linked to the neighborhood from its origins.

Also around this time, the so-called cellar was excavated, which coincided with the layout of the current Pagés del Corro. It consisted of a kind of channel or hollow that bordered the neighborhood in its eastern part, trying to protect it from the constant flooding of the Guadalquivir. With this layout, which was probably made by taking advantage of the previous channel of a branch of the river, it was a question of channeling the water avoiding floods, an objective that we know was not always achieved.


Triana was the fundamental scene of the Christian conquest of Seville. To the south, in Tablada, one of the main siege camps was located. In addition, the definitive blow in favor of the Castilians was the destruction of the Barcas bridge in 1248. In this way, the main route of communication and supply of the city was interrupted, since all the food and products from Aljarafe entered here. . Isbiliya had to surrender after a short time.

Already in Christian times, the Barcas bridge is rebuilt and the population center around the castle of San Jorge is maintained. We know that families even lived inside it and that some of them were Jewish. Inside, the chapel of San Jorge was built, which can be considered the first parish church in Triana.

At the same time, Alfonso X ordered the construction of the church of Santa Ana, the so-called cathedral of Triana, in gratitude for the miraculous cure of a serious eye disease that he suffered from. The wise king promised the Virgin to raise a temple to her holy mother if she healed. And so he did, undertaking at the end of the 13th century a majestic Mudejar Gothic work, one of the references of this style in Andalusia.

Around it, a growing population nucleus would settle, which in addition to the pottery that we have mentioned, would be intensely dedicated to work related to fishing and transport in boats. In fact, a neighborhood with its own personality known as San Sebastián was formed, on the section of Betis street closest to Plaza de Cuba. It overlooked the river in an area with a port air between the Camaroneros and Mulas docks. Over time, the identity of this old San Sebastián neighborhood was diluted in the whole of Triana.


Already at the end of the 15th century, the seat of the court of the Spanish Inquisition in Seville was established in the castle of San Jorge, so it is certain that numerous stories of imprisonment and torture were framed within its walls. This headquarters remained in Triana for more than three centuries, until it was finally demolished at the beginning of the 19th century to locate the Market on its site, which with numerous reforms has reached the present day.