It is one of the oldest human settlements in Spain. Since the first Phoenicians and Carthaginians incursions, it started to be called 'Acci', the previous name just before its current one- 'Wadi' or 'Guad Acci'. It was the important Roman colony called Julia Gemella Acci, and one of the first Christian dioceses in Spain.
Under the Muslims, the town got an Arab town planning which is still kept in some of its streets today. During the 11th and 12th centuries, Wadi Acci as well as Baza, was one of the most flourishing taifas of al-Andalus, a kingdom that disappeared when it was absorbed by the fundamentalist Almohade movement. It took part in the Granada civil wars and became the court of Emir Al-Zagal, who gave it to the Catholic Monarchs in 1489.
Pedro Antonio de Alarcon was born in Guadix in 1833. Two of his works are linked to this town û 'The Infant with the Globe' and 'Three Cornered Hat'.