The Islamic period. The Oriental Islands and Manûrqa
For nearly 400 years, Menorca was part of the Oriental Islands of Al-Andalus, and was repopulated by Arabs and Berbers.
Political instability fostered the island’s refortification and its primary defence, the Seint Agayz fortress, was placed at one of island’s highest points. Madina Manûrqa (Ciutadella) was the principal urban centre and was home to the Governor’s palace and the mosque.
Most of the population lived spread about the numerous agricultural and livestock farms, known as rafals and alquerias. Innovative systems were implemented for exploitation of the land and to obtain resources, like the sínia, a noria used for water extraction.
Following the conquest of Mallorca by James I the Conqueror, Manûrqa (Menorca) fell under the Crown of Aragon, which respected Muslim continuity in exchange for payment of a substantial levy imposed through the Treaty of Capdepera. It was the island’s last Muslim sultan, Rais Abû 'Umar, who signed the island’s surrender in the Treaty of San Agayz.
The Islamic footprint remains alive today in much our local toponymy.