Jornadas Escocesas (Scottish Festival). September. Unique Festival
This festival has been declared to be of Tourist Interest by the Provincial Council of Málaga.
Please check with the local Town Hall or Municipal Tourism Office for the festival date before planning any sightseeing activities.
The village of Teba, in the Guadalhorce-Guadalteba region, still remembers an epic story that occurred in Málaga 700 years ago by celebrating the Scottish Festival. During these exciting days, the exploits of the Scottish Sir James Douglas are commemorated—he is known for helping King Alfonso XI's troops to take over the Castillo de la Estrella from Muslim hands while carrying the embalmed heart of the King of Scotland (Robert de Bruce).
Leprosy seriously struck Robert de Bruce in the war against England, preventing him from fighting against the English on several occasions. After signing the peace agreement with England, the disease had already caused him permanent damage. On his deathbed, he requested his heart to be embalmed and taken to the Holy Land so that he could fight in the Crusades against the infidels, something he never achieved in life.
Sir James was asked to be the man who carried his heart in battle.
As promised, when the King died, his heart was embalmed and then put in a silver case that Sir James would wear around his neck.
Determined to complete his mission, he was leaving for the Holy Land when he learnt of the reconquest led by Alfonso XI in the Iberian Peninsula and, at that very moment, he decided to fight alongside the Castilian and against the Nasrid troops, near the fortress of Teba. During the battle, Sir James stepped in to help some of his men who had fallen into Muslim power. However, this skirmish was nothing but a strategic move to lure Sir James into a trap that ultimately led to his death in combat.
Days later, the castle of Teba fell into Castilian control. The Muslims showed their respect for the courageous knights by returning Sir James' body to the men left alive—the silver case still tied around his neck, carrying the King's heart in it. His men then boiled the body in vinegar only to keep his bones and take them to Scotland.
This unique historical fact still inspires the residents of Teba to celebrate this two-day event that keeps fascinating a significant number of visitors, many of them coming from the United Kingdom.