Windmills are a trademark of the centre of the island of Mallorca (the Pla), dotting the landscape with its elegant presence and giving it a unique and distinctive touch. Although they have lost their original function, these constructions are protected, being of great cultural heritage value as a reflection of Mallorca’s economic, social and cultural past.
In 1180, Normandy already had windmills, and they spread throughout Europe along the 12th century. This new energy technology was brought by the crusaders from the East.
The Moli de Vent which currently decorates Mallorca was probably invented in Persia in the 7th century, spreading to the eastern Mediterranean region. The use of the windmill was diffused by the Byzantines during the Middle Ages over northern Europe and the Arab countries in the south.
In Mallorca, they were used to grind flour and extract groundwater. The first were documented after the Christian conquest (1229), but the second batch was more recently introduced. The first water mill built in Mallorca dates back to 1845 and was used by the Dutch engineer Bouvij for drying tasks in Sant Jordi Pla.