At the end of the 16th century, the Manrique de Lara, a noble family from Malaga, lords in the area since 1508, constructed at their expense the building known today as El Ingenio or house of the Counts. This grand building of renaissance style which has a construction area of over 2000 sq m2 , was built in part from materials from the Arab castle. Currently, this magnificent building is used for the manufacturing of sugar cane honey, the only remaining one in Europe. At the same time, this noble family also constructed the Apero, used for livestock and the storage of crops and tools, this impressive building is now the home of the tourist office, municipal library, archaeological museum and exhibition hall.
After the expulsion of the Moors, the beginning of what was called the Second Repopulation around the Kingdom of Granada started, undertaken by Christians from Jaen and Valencia although there was little impact on the lordship of Frigiliana as the land belonged to the Manrique de Lara family.
This second repopulation in the last part of the century suffered a climate desertification resulting in a consequent loss of the then meagre harvest and therefore an onset of hunger, however, this was cut short by the appearance of more virulent epidemics such as fertile ground starvation.
In 1580 there was an outbreak of the plague and an anthrax epidemic that ravaged the population, by the year 1600 it can be estimated that there were only 100 inhabitants.
The first part of the seventeenth century was also marked by misfortunes. The destruction of crops by heavy storms that were repeated at the start of the century led to new periods dominated by hunger.On the 24th of May 1640, and by Royal Decree, Felipe IV gave Frigiliana the title of Villa, making it independent from the jurisdiction of Velez-Malaga. The village was created and the town hall was established, the first population census showed only 160 inhabitants. Frigiliana was the first place in the area to be “exempt of Villazgo” a sort of tax laid upon towns, and it was from the last quarter of the century that the village started to achieve social and economical organization. The church had a massive influence on society and by the middle of the century the population grew by leaps and bounds, by the year 1700, 500 people had registered on the population census.
Around this date what is now known today as the “Fuente Vieja was built, known then as the Fuente Nueva. Constructed by Mr Inigo Manrique de Lara, 5th lord of Frigiliana and 1st Count of the village in 1640, he also placed his coat of arms on the fountain. The fountain is built against the back wall of a property and was designed to supply water to residents and livestock.In 1676 the works were finished on the parish church, paid for by Manrique de Lara, lord of the town, and led by the architect Bernardo de Godoy. This building occupies an area six hundred twenty square meters and, in general, is of a Baroque style.
It has a Latin cross floorplan with an apse at the chancel. The main structure is made up of three large arches, the central one being the largest. More recently the front altar was modified bringing light to some of the original painting In the eighteenth century Mr Bernardo de Rojas y Sandoval took charge of the parish and remained as priest for forty-seven years. He promoted the regulation of local guilds and made foundations for chaplaincies. He was also an excellent calligrapher and left a curious and interesting file of documents. At the end of this century the Brotherhood of the Blessed Souls ruled, holding mass for the souls of the deceased.
The oldest and eldest brothers of which there is reference to were D. Antonio Rodriguez and D. Andrés Arrabal. In 1771 the constitution of the brotherhood of Nuestra Madre and Señora de los Dolores was approved; the following year robes were used to standardize the brothers, the first time used in Frigiliana. Nowadays the robes of the apostles are used during the Easter processions.
In 1752 Frigiliana started to compose its land registry that was named by the Marquis of the Ensenada, still kept in the town hall. As a statistical document its value is incalculable, the same as a historical piece of work or calligraphy.In 1767 silos for grain storage were constructed. These granaries are parts of the houses situated on the left at the start of Calle Real.The century yet to come was to be interrupted by epidemics of yellow fever, earth tremors and strong hail storms which destroyed the crops; this however could not stem the demographic momentum of the town that by the end of the year 1800 far exceeded 1,700 inhabitants however, it was the following years that marked the maximum high of registered inhabitants.