Valencia (Valencian: València) is the capital of the autonomous community of Valencia and the third-most populated municipality in Spain, with 791,413 inhabitants. It is located on the banks of the Turia, on the east coast of the Iberian Peninsula, at the Gulf of Valencia, north of the Albufera lagoon.
Valencia was founded as a Roman colony in 138 BC. Islamic rule and acculturation ensued in the 8th century, together with the introduction of new irrigation systems and crops. Aragonese Christian conquest took place in 1238, and so the city became the capital of the Kingdom of Valencia. The city became a major silk-manufacturing centre in the 18th century. The city served as accidental seat of the Spanish Government from 1936 to 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. Its historic centre is one of the largest in Spain, with approximately 169 ha (420 acres).