Have you ever heard about the legend of the Algarve Almond Blossom?
Legend has it that many, many centuries ago, before Portugal existed and when Al-Gharb belonged to the Arabs, the famous and young king Ibn-Almundim*, who had never known defeat, reigned in Chelb, which we now know as Silves.
One day, among the prisoners of a battle, he saw a beautiful young woman, Gilda, a blonde princess with blue eyes and a proud bearing. The Moorish king was so besotted by her, that he gave her back her freedom. Over time she gained his trust and one day he confessed his undying love for her and asked her to be his wife.
They were happy for a while, but one day the beautiful princess of the North fell ill for no apparent reason. An old captive from the northern lands asked to be received by the desperate king so that he could reveal his plan to help the princess find happiness once more. He explained to the king that the princess was missing the snow of her distant country, and a solution was at hand!
All the Moorish king would have to do is plant almond trees throughout the kingdom. Then in the spring, when the snow white blossoms filled the trees and, it would look just like snow!
When the princess saw this she would be cured of her longing for her distant land.
The king got to work and a year later he led Gilda up to the terrace window of the castle. The princess regained all her strength when she saw the magnificent view of snow-white blossoms stretched out before her. The tiny white petals gently falling to the ground in the light breeze looked just like the pure white snow that she longed to see from her homeland
The Moorish king and princess lived long years of intense love, and anxiously looked forward to each spring and the abundance of almond blossoms.
There are so many sweet stories and legends like these. Do you know of any others?
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*I searched for information about the King mentioned in this story but couldn’t find anything about him.