It is located to the west, about 10 kilometres from the capital, Burgos, at the end of the valley of the river Urbel and the beginning of the meadows formed by the confluence of the rivers Arlanzón and Urbel. The first historical references to Tardajos date back to the Celtic period, the eighth century BC, when they founded the city of Deobrígula, City of the Gods. Later the Romans settled in the area, and so the eighth city was formed on the road from Astorga to Tarragona. The Roman Augustobriga was strategically located on the road that joined Clunia (Coruña del Conde) and Juliobriga (near Reinosa).
Everything seems to indicate that the location of this Roman settlement coincides with the current Tardajos, as in its municipality are the remains of a Romanized castro and also abundant archaeological remains. During the reign of Alfonso III, in 882, the repopulation of the area began, establishing a defensive line following the course of the River Arlanzón. Among the defences is the castle of Tardajos, which in 1117 housed Alfonso VII as a guest of Count Pedro de Lara. At this time it is mentioned as Otero de Aggos. Also from this period are its Fueros. In the 10th century, the town had two churches, San Pelayo and Santa Eulalia. During the reign of Alfonso VIII there were two districts, to the east, the King's district corresponding to the Hospital del Rey and to the west that of Santa María and it is in the centre of this district where the church of the same name was built, where the castle used to be and the first church with this title. In 1345 the open council was replaced by the municipal council of royal appointment. In 1749 it still had two neighbourhoods with two churches, Santa María and La Magdalena. Of the six hermitages it had, none remain standing. It was a town with jurisdiction of royalty and ordinary mayor.
In Tardajos you can admire the church of Santa María de la Asunción, from the 13th to the 16th centuries. The church contains beautiful altarpieces and Baroque sculptures and its doorway dates from the 18th century. On the site of the palace of Juan de Santo Domingo, donated by the Count of Montemar, is the Apostolic College of the Paúles Fathers, where the remains of the doorway of the old palace from the 16th century are preserved. At the entrance of the village a 17th century transept welcomes the visitor before crossing the river Arlanzón over the archbishop's bridge, of medieval construction and rebuilt in the 17th century, here it is said that it is where King Alfonso VI fell when he was chasing his enemies. Tardajos also has another important heritage such as the pre-Roman and Roman archaeological site of Deobrígula.
The festivities in honour of its patron saint, the Virgen de la Asunción and San Roque are celebrated in Tardajos on 15 and 16 August, and in May the Virgen de las Aguas is honoured. Curious is the feast of The Day of Exaltation of the Potato of Tardajos, which is celebrated on a Sunday in late September or early October. The aim of this festival is to support this product, which is deeply rooted in the locality.
On the day of the Virgen de las Aguas, a beautiful baroque image also kept in the church, it is traditional for a girl to say a long and moving verse.
The Good Friday procession, unlike in many villages in the province, takes place in the morning.
The relic of the seven Saint Maccabees is kept in the church of Santa María de la Asunción. It is customary that on the 1st of August it is adored and legend has it that if a child takes it out of the church when there is a storm, large clouds or hail, these are diluted and removed. Another popular history tells us that in the church of Tardajos Saint Teresa of Jesus received Communion when in 1582 she came to found a convent in Burgos.
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Tardajos is located on the old N-120 towards León, relatively close to Burgos capital. We can also get there by following the A-231 motorway, known as the Way of Saint James, with an exit at kilometre 157. From the south comes a local road from Rabé de las Calzadas.
Tardajos has a bus stop that covers the Burgos-Melgar de Fernamental route every day of the week. Another service that covers the Burgos-Villadiego line from Monday to Saturday, also has a stop in the village.
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