Laurinaga's curse in Fuerteventura

On the fascinating island of Fuerteventura we come across a mystery rooted in local folklore and history: the curse of Laurinaga. Over the centuries, this intriguing story has captured the imagination of everyone who has heard of it. If you don't know it yet, it's time to do so.

The legend of Laurinaga's curse

Fuerteventura is the second largest island of the Canary archipelago and one of the most visited by tourists. But what if it was doomed to disappear? This is what the legend of Laurinaga tells us.

Transmitted orally for centuries, to know it we have to travel back in time to the fifteenth century. At that time, Don Pedro Fernandez de Saavedra was appointed lord of the Canary Islands and arrived in Fuerteventura from Castile. Accustomed to give the best of himself in battle, his fame preceded him wherever he went. But he was not only distinguished for being a good warrior, but also for being a true conqueror.

One of the sons of Don Pedro Fernández was Luis Fernández de Herrera. The scion had inherited his father's seductive character, but not his inclination to fight. Luis was infatuated with a girl named Fernanda, but she resisted his attempts at conquest. In the end, however, she agreed to accompany the young gallant to a hunt organized by his father. It was at that event when Luis invited Fernanda for a walk and during the event he tried to hug her. This did not please the girl, who screamed for help.

Once on the island, it did not take him long to start seducing the aborigines, but he finally married Constanza Sarmiento. With his wife he had a total of 14 children. To these should be added those he had illegitimately with the women he seduced.

Road in Fuerteventura

To his aid, an Indian farmer came to his aid, something that was not to the young gallant's liking. The farmer and the lord's son got into a fight in which Luis was about to get hurt when the farmer got hold of a dagger and was ready to stab him with it.

But as fate would have it, at that moment Don Pedro Fernández de Saavedra, who had also been alerted by the screams, appeared on the scene. Mounted on his horse, and seeing that his son was in danger, he did not hesitate for a moment and struck the young farmer. The latter died on the spot.

At that moment, an old indigenous woman appeared on the scene who said her name was Laurinaga, and who turned out to be the mother of the murdered young man. The old woman told Don Pedro that she had killed her own son, since the boy was the fruit of the relationship that the lord of the Canary Islands and Laurinaga had had in the past.

Corralejo Dunes

Blind with grief at the loss of her son, the woman invoked the Guanche gods and cursed the land of Fuerteventura for being the domain of the man who had just caused her so much harm.

According to legend, after Laurinaga's curse, strong winds began to blow over Fuerteventura. Coming from the Sahara desert, these winds killed much of the vegetation, shaping the landscape that we can see today on the island. The legend tells us that this land is cursed and that, sooner or later, Fuerteventura will eventually disappear.

The importance of legends in the Canary Islands

Guanche folklore and mythology had and still have a great impact on Canarian culture. The curse of Laurinaga has been passed by word of mouth since the 15th century, and there is no islander who has not heard of it, which gives us an idea of how important these stories are within the Canarian identity.

The one we have reviewed is one of the most popular legends, but there are others that also dazzle the public, such as that of the light of Mafasca, which speaks of an anima in the form of a light that appears to travelers who pass through the uninhabited areas of the island at night. Although it has never been entirely clear whether the purpose of this is to guide those who are lost, or to ensure that no one forgets the soul that is condemned to wander the island.

Cofete Beach

These and other legends are waiting for you in Fuerteventura. If we give a certain value to the curse of Laurinaga, it predicts that the island will eventually disappear, so you should not miss the opportunity to visit this beautiful place before it's too late. To make your trip even more special, count on us to discover all the leisure and gastronomic offer that awaits you in each of the islands.

The Canary Islands is a land with a thousand things to see, explore and learn about. If you are interested in knowing more interesting facts about the Canary Islands, its culture and traditions, we leave you below the link to the section Culture and traditions.

Paula Vera


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