Today we’re going to the market. Fancy coming along?
In Toledo market day is a Tuesday so if you say to a Toledano “vamos al martes” (loosely translated as let’s go to the Tuesday) they’ll already know that you’re referring to the market. The street market has a lot of history behind it. It all started in 1465 when King Enrique VI signed a decree stating that “Every Tuesday there will be a weekly market in Toledo which will be free and exempt from taxation”. This privilege was confirmed by the Reyes Catolicos in Olmedo (modern-day Valladolid) ten years later. The original document can still be seen in the local archive to this day.
However, we can trace the beginnings of the market even further back in time to the period of Arab rule over the region in what is now Zocodover Square (“zoco” means market in Arabic). Despite the reconquest of the city by King Alphonso VI in 1085, the market kept attracting lots of merchants from nearby towns. It remained in the Square until 1950 when it was moved to the lower gardens of the Alcázar. This didn’t last for long though and it was soon on the move again, relocating to the Miradero and later to Paseo del Carmen where it remained from the 1970s to the 1990s. The market finally settled in the Paseo de Merchán where it still remains a weekly tradition.
Shall we see if we can find ourselves a bargain?