The 7 wise

In San Sadurní is best known for the work against the disclosure of Phylloxera known today as the Seven wise of Greece, a group of landowners who were characterized by their Sunday gatherings at "Cal Guineu". They received this ironic nickname at the time. According to Pelegrí Torelló, this group included Marc Mir, host of the meetings, the heir called Milà, the heir called Mestres, Rovira de la Foradada, Modest Casanovas, Antoni Escayola, Rafael Mir, the heir from Codorniu, Motes and the Pubill Llopart, the Mariametes and even strangers and foreigners sporadically. For their condition of main land owners in town, this group knew the specialized publications of the time and was in contact with owners from other areas affected by the plague. They act as intermediaries and advisors to the group of owners, servants, tenants and lessees who had worked on the adaptation of new vineyards. Also remember that Pelegrí Torellós was the one who pronounced the names of the people who headed the fight against the phylloxera; Marc Mir, Mir Rafael, Manuel Raventós, Francesc Romeu, Pere Rovira de la Foradada, Modest Casanovas and Antonio Escayola. Form a group of seven, that do not exactly match with the names of the most frequent participants in the meetings at "Cal Guineu", was used to determine which will be the ones used as the wise from Greece in the phylloxera celebration.

Thanks to years of expansion that preceded the crisis, the period of phylloxera arrived in Sant Sadurní in a time of important changes. The population growth spurred the opening of new arteries urban street as Montserrat, or the Diputació Street, where the new road goes trough and facilitates the communications with Barcelona. Precisely this road (1883) and the previous arrival of the train (1865) had facilitated the export of wine. To reach these growing storekeepers in the town, and to welcome them to the main streets of the town, some inns were opened. You could say that the streets were seething so much so that in 1886 the storekeepers asked to the City Halll that in addition to traditional fairs in September that they would like to do another fair in May. Also in the phylloxera crisis in 1888 we built a new slaughterhouse, and just before the plague, the old town hall was demolished because it was insufficient for the needs of the population.

The same year that the phylloxera cames, was born the first local publication, "El Defensor" (The Defender), and the following year, two more would be born, "La comarca del Noya" and "La Llumanera". The town also lived in these years the creation of political organizations, like "El Centre Català" (the Catalan Centre), the intense activity of the casinos, the Circle of Noya Casinos, and the Sant Sadurní Casino. Moreover, the birth of the most important cultural, social and recreational society in San Sadurní during the twentieth century, named "l’Ateneu Fraternitat" (the Athenaeum Fraternity), which is still active today under the name "Ateneu Agrícola" (Agricultural Association).

Phylloxera, then, was a moment of crisis, but also came at a time of prosperity and vitality that can identify the start of the cava industry.

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