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Limpias is situated at an elevation of 30 m in the lower course of the valley of the river Asón in the east of the Spanish autonomous provice of Cantabria. The municipality has a population of about 1,800 (2017).
According to documents, the village appeared first under the Celtic name of Coabab or Koabab. In 1201, Coabab became part of the vassalage of Laredo. From the 14th century until 1840 it belonged to the Vizkaya domains. The historical development of this town was favored from the 15th century by its geographical location to become one of the key points that linked the port of Laredo with the city of Burgos. In the 16th century, the port became important for exporting huge amounts of iron and wood to England and Flanders. Centuries later, the port was dedicated to sending Castilian wheat to America.
The Santisimo Cristo de la Agonía [left] is a most venerated
crucifix in the church of San Pedro in Limpias. The origins of the wooden sculpture are barely known. It is believed
that it was once venerated in the church of the Franciscans in Cádiz and that when it was destroyed by a flood,
the image came in possession of Don Diego de la Piedra, a professed kight of the Order of Santiago. Don Diego died in
1755 and in his will had bequeathed the image of Christ in Agony to the parish church of his native town, Limpias.
Reports in 1919 and 1920 claimed that the image of Christ began to move His eyes, giving the sensation of a living body
that paled, bled and sweated, which was the origin of a long tradion of pilgrimages to Limpias. (A copy of the monumental
crucifix was placed in the new parish church Starchant in Vienna, built in 1928/1929).