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Heritage of Mercury. Almadén and Idrija

The property includes the mining sites of Almadén (Spain), where mercury (quicksilver) has been extracted since antiquity, and Idrija (Slovenia), where mercury was first found in AD1490. The Spanish property includes buildings relating to its mining history, including Retamar Castle, religious buildings and traditional dwellings. The site in Idrija notably features mercury stores and infrastructure, as well as miners’ living quarters, and a miners’ theatre. The sites bear testimony to the intercontinental trade in mercury which generated important exchanges between Europe and America over the centuries. Together they represent the two largest mercury mines in the world, operational until recent times.

Criteria for inclusion as a World Heritage Site

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iiTo exhibit an important interchange of human values, over a span of time or within a cultural area of the world, on developments in architecture or technology, monumental arts, town-planning or landscape design. All
ivTo be an outstanding example of a type of building, architectural or technological ensemble or landscape which illustrates (a) significant stage(s) in human history. All

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Caliphate City of Medina Azahara 201898.9km site_whs
Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida 1993130.7km site_whs
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Renaissance Monumental Ensembles of Úbeda and Baeza 2003153.5km site_whs
Royal Monastery of Santa María de Guadalupe 199386.3km site_whs
Historic City of Toledo 1986139.9km site_whs
Historic Centre of Cordoba 198499.8km site_whs

About the source: UNESCO

Within UNESCO's broad remit, this specialised agency of the UN works towards international cooperation agreements to secure the world's cultural and natural heritage, designating venues of exceptional value as World Heritage Sites.