Franja de Ponent

La Ribagorça La Llitera El Baix Cinca El Matarranya


Modern denomination of a belt of Catalan territory at the western boundary of the Principality wich, after the temporary administrative partition of the province carried out in 1822 —and also in al the later ones— was included in the Aragonese provinces Huesca, Saragossa and Teruel. The belt comprises, from north to south, the counties of La Ribagorça, La Llitera, El Baix Cinca  and El Matarranya. The ecclesiastic partitions of the territory of Franja de Ponent remained ascribed to Catalan dioceses (Lleida, Tortosa and, until 1956 when they passed on to the diocese of Lleida, Urgell) until the middle of the 20th century, except for El Matarranya (1210) and, recently, part of El Baix Cinca which is a dependency of the bishopric of Saragossa. The bishoprics of Aragon repeatedly claimed the right over the jurisdiction of the areas included in Franja de Ponent; such claims were partially accomplished in 1995 when the Vatican ordered that 111 the parishes belonging to the diocese of Lleida were transferred to the diocese of Barbastre and were completed in 1998. In 1999, the regional parliament of Aragon agreed that the Catalan and Spanish languages should both be official in the areas included in Franja de Ponent. In 1995, there came a resolution that the parishes belonging to the bishopric of Lleida which stood in Aragon were transferred to the bishopric of Barbastre which thereafter took the name of Barbastre. The first parishes to be transferred were those located in western Ribagorça, eastern Ribagorça and the middle part of El Cinca; those located in La Llitera and El Baix Cinca are expected to be transferred in 1998. These transfers demanded by both the civil and the ecclesiastic authorities of Aragon were not generally welcome and have so far been causing clash of interests, such as property rights claimed over some art works like those of the monastery of Sixena which were recently sold to the Generalitat de Catalunya.

Freedom for Catalonia! The Cinca as a frontier in history

Catalan in Aragon
County of Ribagorça

Map of La Franja de Ponent
The Catalan language

Els Països Catalans (The Catalan Countries)

The Catalanism

 

La Franja de Ponent (catalan)