Seminar on "Hispano-Portuguese Bastioned Fortifications, a
Cultural Route Across Five Continents". IBIZA, Spain. 18th-20th
The Chairmen and representatives of the
ICOMOS National Committees, as well as experts who gathered together
in the City of IBIZA (Spain) for the International Seminar on 'Hispano-Portuguese
Bastioned Fortifications, a Cultural Route Across the Five Continents'
( 18th û 20th May 1999), organized by the International Committee
on Cultural Routes, have drawn the following:
- In general, fortresses are, due to
their very nature, one of the most important and indispensable
material testimonies for understanding cultural exchange and the
history of human communication throughout the world and throughout
the History, and therefore constitute a global and universal
- Fortresses and Fortified Cities have
constitutes a vast network of cultural routes of great technical
complexity and diverse cultural interpretation throughout their
history, which merits careful study and development given that
these cultural routes convey a wide range of messages which can
even vary during the course of history and throughout the world.
- Fortresses are, therefore, witnesses
to and significant examples of historical û cultural changes and
exchanges, whose international nature explains the diverse aspects
of historical reality which the Fortresses symbolize.
- Fortresses which became Cities or
which protected them constitute essential sites on the inland
routes of fluvial or terrestrial penetration and are important
elements in relation to the cultural and technical organization of
large territories. They give rise to links among the five
continents and form part of the essential Heritage of regional and
universal culture and history. They also establish and consolidate
other territorial structures with which they come into contact.
- The bastioned systems of the
Hispanic and Portuguese School of Fortification are important in
the sense that, chronologically speaking, they were the first to
be developed during the organization of large territories outside
Therefore, within the diversity of
cultural routes, they constitute a specific type of large,
extensive and cultural influential route that requires a thorough
examination of their complexity and evolution.
These bastioned Fortresses
subsequently gave rise to the development of other Schools of
- These Hispanic and Portuguese
Fortresses have certain theoretical and technological elements in
common and coincide in being a means of spreading the Spanish and
Portuguese languages throughout the world on a very large scale;
in being the origin of a cultural transformation which gave rise
to many new nationalities with their own identity, in spreading a
mixed-race and original idiosyncrasy of great value, a highly
significant model adapted to the diverse cultures which it has
created, and an essentially common character and set of value.
- Nowadays, Fortresses and fortified
cities, which constitute varied cultural routes, have a
significant universal value which aids cultural understanding
For the first time in their history,
the Fortresses built for attacking, defending or violently
intimidating are valid instruments for overcoming conflicts and
for the historical recognition of identity, yet now understood as
a symbol of brotherhood among nations by becoming routes for the
Culture of peace.
Fortresses are subject to different
and sometimes contradictory interpretations, they convey a wide
variety of messages depending on each place and time, but they are
now symbols of the overcoming of difficulties and cultural
- Apart from their aesthetic and
material stylistic value, fortresses encompass cultures of various
inter-land territories and produce genuinely mixed cultures, as
occurs, among other cases, with the Fortifications on the west
coast of Africa, which generated the first manifestations of the
important African culture in America and which are the origins of
the African Diaspora.
- Fortresses represent an enormous
effort and step forward for the technology of their time and for
the extensive development and spread of science and technology,
giving rise to schools, treatises and manuals relating to a wide
range of scientific aspects.
- Besides their military
characteristics, fortresses, and especially those which date from
the 16th and 17th centuries, embody ideological aspects which need
to be assessed due to the fact that the fortresses served a city
or an ideal governing order of a territory, offering an example of
harmony between defensive methods and the defining values to be
defended during each cultural period.
Nowadays, Fortresses symbolically
safeguard the culture of reconciliation with the past as well as
today's culture of peace and dialogue among nations, whereby they
once again become a means of communicating a new message, while
the strength and resilience of their walls and foundations are
reaffirmed in their new cultural mission.
- The scientific nature of the
Fortresses and the Military Engineering work which enabled them to
appear demonstrate the different levels of science and industry
and represent a scientific universe which helped to change the
- The outstanding merits of some
Fortresses are so important that they have deserved to become
examples of the Heritage Mankind, but they can only be explained
within the context of them as a whole.
As a whole, Fortresses acquire
greater importance through extending and broadening their
technical and cultural message, through demonstrating the extent
of their influence with regard to ideas, languages, the
organization of territory on a world-wide scale, etc,à and by
collectively representing an impressive exponent of the concept of
defense and its accompanying techn9ology between the 16th and 19th
- Fortresses have eminently historical
value as witnesses to events and as documents subject to
multidisciplinary interpretation: the urban and environmental
quality of the different strata present on the sites where they
are located, which bring together urban, architectural,
typological and morphological values.
THESE CONCLUSIONS LEAD TO THE FOLLOWING
- To encourage the International
Committee on Cultural Routes to prepare a Preliminary Inventory of
Hispano-Portuguese Bastioned Fortifications, extending to other
models, which correspond to other cultural areas represented here,
with the aim of highlighting the universal nature and importance
of this type of bastioned fortification. Likewise, to encourage
the Committee to prepare a preliminary design of the cultural
routes deriving from Bastioned Fortification.
- To acknowledge the Bastioned
Fortification of IBIZA, the inspiration for this International
Seminar, possesses exceptional value due to the purity of its
Renaissance design, its authenticity as a result of its undamaged
architectural condition, its integration with its city and its
surrounding landscape, and due to the fact that it may be regarded
as a paradigm of the material and intangible values acknowledged
Its value as a historical document
lies in it having been an early application of the military
treatises of the Renaissance and in the fact that it constitutes
the most important and prim genial surviving example of a tried
and tested Hispanic construction dating from the 16th century
within the universal system of Hispanic fortifications.
- To recommend the creation of Site or
City Museums and the appropriate education at all professional
levels affected for the signposting, interpretation and
dissemination of the tangible and intangible values and of the
historical, evolutionary values encompassed by Bastioned Military
Architecture, in accordance with the values highlighted herein.
- To promote historical-cultural
research in order to adequately encourage and justify the
Preliminary Inventories of Cultural Routes.
- To encourage the world-wide defense
of this Heritage in its significant integrity, in the belief that
the best defense is the social one which derives from the cultural
spread of education and appraisal of society, which should see in
these Fortresses the values of a society in favor of peace.
IBIZA, 22 May, 1999