A long, long time ago, in a far, far city (13th century Madrid to be accurate, which would have been far away at that time), it was decided that The Bear and the Strawberry Tree (El Oso y el Madroño) would be incorporated into the coat of arms of the city.
Prior to this, only the bear had been part of the coat of arms. It obviously needed something to lean against, but that wasn’t the reason for the change. It was as a result of the settling of a long-standing dispute between a religious order and the municipal authority over who had responsibility for pastures and who had control over trees. To this day, politicians still prefer to quibble over trivia rather than concentrate on things that matter.
In January 1967, this statue by the sculptor Antonio Navarro Santafé was officially inaugurated. It is located in the famous Puerta del Sol in Madrid, between Calle de Alcalá and Carrera de San Jerónimo. The statue is 4 metres tall, weighs 20 tonnes and is made of stone and bronze.