Priest and poet, he is one of Pollensa’s most celebrated historical figures. | M. SEGURA

Miquel Costa i Llobera died in October 1922. Priest and poet, he is one of Pollensa’s most celebrated historical figures, and to mark the one-hundredth anniversary of his death, the town hall is to dedicate 2022 to him. It will be the Year of Costa i Llobera.

The physical manifestations in memory of Costa i Llobera are already strong. The monument in his honour was inaugurated in October 1972 to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of his death.

Can Llobera, the municipal library in Plaça Vella, was once a family home. Away from Pollensa, there is the bust in Lluc, there are the Costa i Llobera Gardens in Barcelona, and there is the statue of Nuredduna in Palma - a beautiful work dedicated to the tragic heroine of Costa i Llobera’s epic poem ‘La deixa de geni grec’ (The Legacy of Greek Genius).

Best known for ‘El Pi de Formentor’ (The Formentor pine), Costa i Llobera was first recognised as a major poetic talent when he won an award at the Jocs Florals (Floral Games) in Barcelona at the age of just nineteen (in 1874). These games had originated in the fourteenth century.

A poetry contest, the title was because of the prizes - a golden violet was the first prize. Revived in 1859, they were representative of the Catalan Renaissance. Costa i Llobera was associated with this movement, as he also was with the Majorcan “school” of poetry.

There are all sorts of reminders of him. One is the Hotel Formentor, as it sits on land that was bought from his family by the Argentine Adan Diehl. Among Guillem Bestard’s priceless archive of photographs from the era, Costa i Llobera can be found. There is one of him at the laying of the first stone for the Pollensa railway station (later aborted). He was with the Bishop of Mallorca; they were there to conduct the blessing.

A man of Pollensa, a great of Pollensa, but a great also of Mallorca and the island’s cultural heritage.