Balearic Islands

(redirected from Balearic Isles)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.
Related to Balearic Isles: Illes Balears, Islas Baleares, Balearen

Balearic Islands

(bălēăr`ĭk), Span. Baleares (bälāä`rās), archipelago, off Spain, in the W Mediterranean, forming Baleares prov. (1990 pop. 767,918) of Spain; also an autonomous region since 1983. Palma is the capital. The chief islands are Majorca, Minorca, and Ibiza. Noted for their scenery and their mild climate, the Balearics are a major tourist destination. After tourism, agriculture and fishing are the chief economic activities; fruit, wine, olive oil, majolica ware, and silver filigree are exported. Both Catalan and Castilian Spanish are spoken. Inhabited since prehistoric times—there are numerous Cyclopean remains—the islands were occupied by Iberians, Phoenicians, Greeks, Carthaginians, Romans, and Byzantines. The Moors, who first came in the 8th cent., established (11th cent.) an independent kingdom, which became the seat of powerful pirates, harassing Mediterranean coastal cities and trade. James I of Aragón conquered (1229–35) the islands. They were included (1276–1343) in the independent kingdom of Majorca and reverted to the Aragonese crown under Peter IV. At the outbreak of the Spanish civil war (1936), Majorca and Ibiza were seized by Insurgent forces—Majorca becoming a base of the Italian fleet—while Minorca remained in the hands of the Loyalists until 1939.
References in periodicals archive ?
After a break of almost two decades I returned to the Balearic Isle with expectations other than making sandcastles and eating as much ice cream as my parents could afford.
The Pars gaffer, who returned from Mallorca earlier this week, claimed Hoops fans holidaying on the Balearic Isles were outraged by Sutton's views.
where we have 30 teachers and 800 to 1,000 exam candidates per year; Spain with 25 teachers across the country, including the Balearic Isles, and 500 to 800 candidates; Greece; Italy; Malta; Cyprus; Australia; New Zealand; and Brazil.