espacio de trabajo campo animales
The era as a working space
Source: Town hall of Colomera
 

DEFINITION AND STRUCTURE

The eras (threshing floor) are clean and solid areas, outdoors and prepared to thresh and winnowing the cereals and to obtain this way the grain. When they are grouped in a collective area, the set is named common land. Its use is usually a community.

Eras de Tózar (Moclín) Fuente: Ayuntamiento de Moclín
Eras of Tózar (Moclín)
Source: Town hall of Moclín

 

Normally the eras (threshing floor) were located in spaces next to the area of cultivation, to avoid to transport the grain and the straw. And in the precincts of the village or the constructive set which makes up the nucleus of the development (the farmhouse), in topographically prominent and quite ventilated areas, to make use of the wind.

These are structures generally with a circular layout, although sometimes there are some of them with a rectangular layout. Its sizes are variable, but at least they have to have enough width so that a threshing machine thrown by a mule could turn, turning on its surface, for hours, without forcing too much the curves so that the animal works comfortably.

 

Era La Viñuela (Montefrío), de planta circular
Era Viñuela (Montefrío), with a circular layout
Source: Town hall of Montefrío
 

 TÉCNICA CONSTRUCTIVA


They were constructed with a light slope, to avoid flooding. Later the balate testero was built, which consolidated the cut applied to the area, and the balate de base or balate de sustentación, which hold the filling of the opposite part.

Later the stone pavement took place. If it was built with materials of small size, earlier the radius were planned from the centre of the era (threshing floor) to divide it and to facilitate this process.

 

Empedrado a partir de radios que salen del centro, dividiendo el espacio. Era de las Navillas (Montefrío)
Stone pavement from radius that comes from the centre, dividing the space. Era of the Navillas (Montefrío)
Source: Town hall of Montefrío

 

This step was not necessary if it was paved with sandstones of big size.

 
Detalle de empedrado con grandes lajas de piedra. Eras Zaparas (Guadahortuna)
Stone pavement detail with big stone sandstones. Zaparas’ era (Guadahortuna)
Source: Town hall of Guadahortuna
 

The circle could be completed with a stone row with a bigger size, making up a perimeter wall, in order to avoid the leakage of the cereal and to isolate them from torrents that could be formed with the rain, helping this way to its conservation.

 

TYPOLOGY


- Stone pavement’s era (threshing floor). Paved with materials of diverse nature (pebbles, rough stones, sandstones of slate, flagstones, etc.).
- Era (threshing floor) excavated on the exposed rock.
- Era (threshing floor) without stone or terriza. Made of tamped ground.
- Singular era (threshing floor). It has an elongated plant or big dimensions, without fitting to the basic typology.

 
Detalle Eras de la Puente (Montejícar), de planta rectangular
Detail era of the Bridge (Montejícar), with a rectangular layout
Source: Town hall of Montejícar

 

Era Cerro el Olivo (Íllora), de planta circular
Era of Cerro el Olivo (Íllora), with a circular layout
Source: Town hall of Íllora
 
Era de Morillas, Angostura (Íllora), de planta rectangular
Morillas’ era, Angostura (Íllora), with a rectangular layout
Source: Town hall of Íllora

 

COMPLEMENTARY CONSTRUCTIONS

Farmhouse. Nucleus of the farm. It has a varied size, depending on the dimensions of the farmhouse.

In the grain-producing dry land grounds, the big farmhouses predominate, archetypal of the latifundium. They include the house of the farm’s owner, the accommodations of the staff and the rooms of the activity. The simple farms are oriented to the courtyard. Around the house there are stables and granaries. Both models are usually provided with a cattle hut to work or to dung.

 

Cortijo de La Cañada Montefrío
 
Farmhouse of La Cañada (Montefrío)
Source: Town hall of Montefrío

 

Hut, barn, cabin, or chambao. Small are made of trunks or canes and covered with straw or branches. It was used by the farmers basically to keep the tools, to be protected from the inclemency of the weather, to keep the drink and the meal fresh, to store the grain and as a guard post when the cereal was in the era (threshing floor) at night.

 Cortijo de La Cañada (Montefrío)Small complementary construction in the Cima’s era (Íllora)
Source: Town hall of Íllora

 

Other rural infrastructures related to the process of the cereal are the flour mills and the stoves bakers or tahonas.

The square, a place where everybody can buy and sell, in addition to socializing, informing or celebrating, can be considered an economic area linked to these agricultural tasks.