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The Barraca de Roter

In Mallorca’s countryside we can find a Chozo de Pastor (Mallorquín: Barraca de Roter, Catalan: Catxerulo) like this one, built in piedra seca (dry stone). This is a shepherd’s hut in dry stone of times gone by. Huts like this were often built by the Pagès or Roter (shepherd) on a minor field of the land-owning farmer employing him. These barraques were used periodically during times of harvesting of either algarrobas, almonds or figs. The huts provided shelter during rain or storm and were used for storing tools and equipment, or to keep guard of a goat or two overnight.

The huts were built solidly. The one shown here is still standing strong after a few hundred years. I am not suggesting that this Barraca was erected by the Moors but, its design may well go back to the Moorish settlers, circa 1200 AD. Well done, Roter.

The photo was taken near Santanyí, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: September 29th, 2011. The time was 13:29:31.

1 reply »

  1. “Catxerulo”? It may refer to the conical shape of the top. It sounds strange to me, though. Where I live (Central Catalonia) it’s always been either “barraca (or cabana) de pedra seca” or “barraca de vinya”, as far as I know!! We have plenty of them over here, with very similar roof and overall designs, many times in abandoned places taken over by the pine woods and scrub.
    I’ve observed you tend to favour romantic Moorish origins for multiple constructions. I wouldn’t be so sure in this case. Many of these “barraques” aren’t as old as you figure them to be.

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October 2011


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