The Fossar de les Moreres (Grave of the Mulberries) is a paved plaza located near the church of Santa Maria del Mar in Barcelona. The origins of the square go back to the times when an old cemetery in which the faithful of the Santa Maria del Mar were buried in the twelfth century could be found there.
According to legend, the priest of the Santa María del Mar asked a bourgeois called Bernard Marcus for a piece of land to bury the believers of his parish. The aristocrat agreed on the condition that someone would be buried there within 15 days in order to justify the urgency of the request. After the time passed and not a single person died, Marcus came to claim his land. However, on the road full of mulberry he suffered a heart attack which unexpectedly ended his life. Thus, he was the first person buried in the new cemetery.
The place functioned as a regular cemetery until the eighteenth century and the War of the Spanish Succession. When the city was captured on 11 September 1714, all that were killed in the battle were buried in the Fossar de les Moreres. In the nineteenth century, the decree issued by King Charles III of Spain required the parish cemeteries to be turned into squares and so the cemetery in which the defenders of Barcelona were buried was paved over and became a square.
Today, the square is an important place for the Catalan people and every year on 11 September, which is the National Day of Catalonia, they pay homage to the defenders of Barcelona who were killed and buried in this place. Therefore, in the plaza, there is a memorial which features a torch of eternal flame and a poem by Frederic Soler, "El Fossar de les Moreres", which reads:
Al Fossar de les Moreres, no s'hi enterra cap traïdor
Fins perdent nostres banderes, serà l'urna de l'honor.
(In the Moreres Fossar, no one was buried a traitor
Even stripped off our flags, this is the tomb of honour.)