A Brief History of Spain From the 9th Century to the 16th Century (Illustrated Historical Timeline)

Ronda - Moorish Kings Seat

Ronda Reconquest 1485. Copyright Tricia Mason. Ronda. Moorish Kings Seat. 1985.
Ronda Reconquest 1485. Copyright Tricia Mason. Ronda. Moorish Kings Seat. 1985.

Spain: Frontier to Empire

The history of Spain is a fascinating story. Reminders of the past can be seen throughout the country.

'Spain' was part of a Muslim empire for many years but, in 1492, she became independent, only to establish an empire of her own in that same year.

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Angus MacKay:

"In 711 the Muslims overran most of the Iberian peninsula, and it was only in 1492, after centuries of frontier warfare, that the Christians completed their reconquest by taking Muslim Granada.

"However, in the same year as the fall of Granada, Columbus discovered America ... .. no sooner had fragmented Spain achieved some measure of unity, after struggles against Islam, than she emerged to dominate the European stage and administer a vast Empire. .."

'Spain in the Middle Ages ~ From Frontier to Empire, 1000-1500'

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"In fourteen hundred and ninety-two

Columbus sailed the ocean blue"

Maps

'Spain' 910
'Spain' 910
'Spain' 1190
'Spain' 1190
Castile 1210
Castile 1210

More Maps

'Al Andalus c.1000'  * * * This image has been (or is hereby) released into the public domain by its author, Sugaar at the wikipedia project Further details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Al_Andalus.gif
'Al Andalus c.1000' * * * This image has been (or is hereby) released into the public domain by its author, Sugaar at the wikipedia project Further details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Al_Andalus.gif
'Political map of Iberia in 1031 (showing major taifas and other states).' A* * * uthor:Sugaar The copyright holder of this work allows anyone to use it for any purpose including unrestricted redistribution, commercial use, and modification. Further
'Political map of Iberia in 1031 (showing major taifas and other states).' A* * * uthor:Sugaar The copyright holder of this work allows anyone to use it for any purpose including unrestricted redistribution, commercial use, and modification. Further
'Almoravid-empire at its greatest extent ~ circa 1106'. * * *  Author of map: Bamse Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. Further details: http://en.wikipedia.org/
'Almoravid-empire at its greatest extent ~ circa 1106'. * * * Author of map: Bamse Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. Further details: http://en.wikipedia.org/
'Map of the Almohad dynasty/empire in North Africa/Iberia, AD 1200'. * * *  Author: Gabagool / Jarle Grhn This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. Further details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Almohad120
'Map of the Almohad dynasty/empire in North Africa/Iberia, AD 1200'. * * * Author: Gabagool / Jarle Grhn This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. Further details: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Almohad120

Seville - Alcazar

In 715 Seville was capital of an almost entirely Muslim 'Spain'. Seville was reconquered in 1236. Copyright Tricia Mason. Seville Alcazar. 1985.
In 715 Seville was capital of an almost entirely Muslim 'Spain'. Seville was reconquered in 1236. Copyright Tricia Mason. Seville Alcazar. 1985.

Antequera

1410 - Ferdinand of Aragon reconquered Antequera. Copyright Tricia Mason. Antequera 1985.
1410 - Ferdinand of Aragon reconquered Antequera. Copyright Tricia Mason. Antequera 1985.

Granada - Alhambra & Generalife Gardens

Granada was finally reconquered in 1492. The Alhambra & Generalife Gardens 1985. Copyright Tricia Mason
Granada was finally reconquered in 1492. The Alhambra & Generalife Gardens 1985. Copyright Tricia Mason

Timeline of 'Spanish' History

Timeline ~ Late Medieval and Early Modern 'Spain'

711 -Muslim invaders, dependent on the Umayyad Emirate of Damascus, enter Visigothic Iberia, from Northern Africa, beginning Islamic Conquest of perinsula.

715 -Seville becomes capital of an almost completely Muslim Spain ~ though battles between Muslim & Christian forces continue throughout period.

717 -Córdoba becomes capital of Muslim 'Al-Andalus' ~ Andalucia; Southern Spain, which remained at least partly in Moorish hands until 1492.

718 -Christian Kingdom of Asturias established by King Pelayo

722 -Battle of Covadonga - King Pelayo defeats Muslim force, beginning what will eventually become known as 'La Reconquista'.

756 -End of Emirate dependent on Damascus

756 -Independent Emirate of Córdoba established

800 -Charlemagne takes Barcelona and becomes "Holy Roman Emperor"

929 - End of Independent Emirate

929 - Establishment of Umayyad Caliphate

1031 - The Moorish Caliphate of Córdoba fragments

1037 - Union of Castile and Leon under Ferdinand I

1137 - Union of Catalonia and Aragon

1145 - End of Almoravid rule in El Andalus

1158 - Order of Calatrava founded

1195: St Anthony of Padua ~ then Fernando Bulhom ~ born Lisbom

1229 - Jaime I of Aragon, the Conqueror, reconquers Majorca

1232 - Ibiza reconquered

1236 - Portugal reconquers most of the Algarve.

1236 - Castile forces under Ferdinand III of Castile reconquer Córdoba and Seville

1236 - Ferdinand III of Castile grants Granada independence, but as a Castilian subject

1238 - Aragon captures Valencia.

1238 - Emirate of Granada officially founded, under Nasrid rule.

1238 - Jaime I reconquers Valencia

1243 - Jaime I reconquers Murcia

1246 - Jaén reconquered by Ferdinand III of Castile.

1246 - Treaty of Jaén establishes Emirate of Granada as vassal state of Castile.

1248 - Ferdinand III of Castile reconquers Seville

1249 - King Afonso III of Portugal reconquers Faro ~ last Muslim state on Portuguese soil

1250 - Jerez reconquered

1262 - Cádiz reconquered

1273 - Creation of the 'Honrado Concejo de la Mesta' (Sheep Routes)

1287 - Menorca reconquered

1310 - Castile captures Gibraltar.

1319 - Granada defeats Castilian invaders

1325 - Castilian force successfully attacks Granada

1333 - Granada retakes Gibraltar from the Castilians.

1390: Henry III, son of John I, King of Castile, and Eleanor of Aragon, becomes King of Castile and León

1396: Martin, son of King Peter IV of Aragon, becomes King of Aragon (last of the House of Barcelona / Casa d'Aragona)

1405: John II of Castile born ~ son of Henry III of Castile and Catherine of Lancaster (John of Gaunt's daughter)

1406: John II becomes King of Castile on the death of his father, Henry III of Castile

1410: Ferdinand I (of the Castilian Trastamara Dynasty) becomes King of Aragon.

1410 - Ferdinand of Aragon reconquers Antequera.

1415 - Portugal takes Ceuta in North Africa.

1425: Henry IV of Castile born

1451: Isabella of Castile born

1452: Ferdinand of Aragon born

1454: Henry IV becomes king of Castile

1462 - Castile reconquers Gibraltar

1469: Ferdinand of Aragon marries Isabella of Castile

1474: Henry IV dies & Isabella, his half-sister becomes Queen of Castile and León

1474: Ferdinand of Aragon becomes co-monarch of Castile and León

1478: The Spanish Inquisition (Tribunal of the Holy Office of the Inquisition) established, by Ferdinand and Isabella, in Castile

1479: Ferdinand becomes King of Aragon, Catalonia, Majorca, Naples, and Valencia on the death of his father, John II.

1479: Queen becomes queen-consort of Aragon, Catalonia, Majorca, Naples, and Valencia

1480: The first two inquisitors named

1481: First 'auto de fe' of the Spanish Inquisition held in Seville ~ six people burned alive

1482: Permanent tribunals of the Inquisition established in Seville and in Cordoba.

1482: Tribunals of the Inquisition established in Zaragoza and Valencia (Aragon)

1483: Pope, under pressure from Ferdinand, names Tomás de Torquemada Inquisitor General of Aragón, Valencia and Catalonia.

1483 - Emir Muhammad XII of Granada captured ~ first King of Granada to be captured by the Christians.

1484: Pope Innocent VIII attempts, in vain, to allow appeals to Rome against the Inquisition

1484: Tribunal of the Inquisition established in Barcelona

1485: Permanent tribunals of the Inquisition established in Toledo and in Llerena.

1485 - Ronda reconquered

1487 - Málaga reconquered

1488: Permanent tribunals of the Inquisition established in Valladolid and in Murcia.

1488: Tribunal of the Inquisition established in Majorca

1489: A permanent tribunal of the Inquisition established in Cuenca.

1491 - Muslims of Granada surrender

1492 - 2 January; The Catholic Monarchs, Isabella and Ferdinand take over Granada.

1492: Ferdinand & Isabella's conquest of Granada ends the 'Reconquista' (reconquest)

1492: Spain's successful patronage of Christopher Columbus - discovery of Americas

1492: Ximenez de Cisneros ~ later Inquisitor General ~ becomes Isabella's confessor

1492: The expulsion of Jews and Muslims from 'Spain'.

1492: By this time, Inquisitional tribunals existed in eight Castilian cities

1496 - Moors expelled from Portugal.

1502: All Moors in Granada compelled to convert to Christianity.

1504: Queen Isabella dies and her daughter Joana becomes nominal queen

1508: Ferdinand becomes Regent of Castile, because of his daughter Joana's mental instability

1512: A permanent tribunal of the Inquisition established in Logroño.

1516: Ferdinand of Aragon dies and his daughter Joana ('the Mad') becomes nominal queen ~ with her son, Charles, as Regent

1516: Charles I, and his mother Joana 'the Mad', proclaimed joint monarchs of Castile and of Aragon

1517: Martin Luther sets off the Protestant Reformation in Europe with his '95 Theses'

1526: A permanent tribunal of the Inquisition established in Granada.

1534: Henry VIII becomes 'Supreme Head of the Church of England' - allows for annulment of his marriage to Katherine of Aragon

1556: Charles I abdicates because of ill-health

1556: Philip II becomes King of Spain (He is, as Mary I's husband, King consort of England 1554-1558)

1558: Death of Charles I, first true King of Spain (also 'Holy Roman Emperor')

1574: A permanent tribunal of the Inquisition established in Santiago de Compostela.

1598: Philip II dies

1598: Philip III, son of Philip II becomes King of Spain (also King Philip II of Portugal)

1609 - Philip III issues 'Act of Expulsion' for all remaining Moriscos

1616 - Final Moriscos (Muslim converts to Christianity) expelled from Iberia.

1621: Philip III dies

'Medieval' and 'Early Modern'

For 'Spain', the definition of the 'Middle Ages', is the period from the first Muslim invasion until the final Christian reconquest, ie 711 -1492.

Thereafter, until 'modern times, one might term the period 'Early Modern' or, as in the case of W A Christian, 'Renaissance' Spain.

History: There are several torres (towers) near Torroella de Montgri

Source

Glossary of Certain Terms

Religious:

Moors ~ Muslims who conquered most of Spain, via North Africa (Morocco). They were of Berber and Arab ancestry. The word originated in Greek ~ 'Mauros‘ = 'inhabitant of Mauretania’

Moriscos ~ Moorish / Muslim converts to Christianity. Nominally Catholic, they were suspected of remaining true to Islam.

Marranos ~ Iberian Jews, who were forced to convert to Christianity, but who secretly remained true to Judaism.

Conversos ~ Jewish converts to Christianity. Nominally Catholic, they were suspected of remaining true to Judaism ~ or of being Marranos.

Geographical:

Iberia / Iberian Peninsula ~ Penisula in South-West Europe, separated from France by the Pyrenees

Includes Spain, Portugal and a small amount of southern France.

Also Gibraltar & Andorra


Some Connections Between English + Spanish Royals

371 - John of Gaunt, widower of Blanche of Lancaster, son of King Edward III of England, marries Constance of Castile, daughter of King Peter (the Cruel) of Castile
1372 - Edmund, Duke of York, son of King Edward III of England, marries Isabella of Castile, daughter of King Peter (the Cruel) of Castile
1373 - Katherine of Lancaster born to John of Gaunt & Constance of Castile
1387 - Philippa of Lancaster, daughter of John of Gaunt and his first wife, Blanche of Lancaster, marries King John I of Portugal (their son = King Duarte)
1388 - Katherine of Lancaster marries Henry III of Castle (son of King John I of Castile & grandson of Henry II of Castile, King Peter's illegitimate brother)
1401 - Maria of Castile (future wife of Alfonso V, King of Aragon and Naples) born to Katherine of Lancaster and Henry III of Castile
1403 - Catherine of Castile (future wife of Henry of Aragon, Duke of Villena) born to Katherine of Lancaster and Henry III of Castile
1405 - John (future John II, King of Castile) born to Katherine of Lancaster and Henry III of Castile
1485 - Katherine of Aragon born, Madrid - daughter of Ferdinand & Isabella
1497 - Betrothal of Katherine of Aragon to Arthur Tudor, Prince of Wales
1501 - Marriage of Katherine of Aragon to Prince Arthur Tudor
1503 - Betrothal of Katherine of Aragon to Henry Tudor, Prince of Wales, following the death of Arthur
1509 - Marriage of Katherine of Aragon to Prince Arthur Tudor
1516 - Princess Mary born to Henry VIII and Katherine of Aragon
1533 - Annulment of marriage between Katherine of Aragon and Henry VIII (because she had been married to his brother)
1536 - Katherine of Aragon dies
1554 - Mary I of England, daughter of Henry VIII and Katherine of Aragon, marries Philip II (great grandson of Ferdinand & Isabella) of Spain, son of Charles V
1558 - Death of Mary I of England ~ Philip has no further authority in England
1559 - Philip II of Spain offers marriage to his sister-in-law, Elizabeth I of England
1588 - Philip II launches 'Spanish Armada' against England (unsuccessfully)

Map of Spain

Comments 7 comments

Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

One can easily see the different aspects of various religions in the architecture intermixed in the churches of Toledo, Spain for example. Spain is so very interesting! Loved what we saw of it.


Trish_M profile image

Trish_M 6 years ago from The English Midlands Author

Hi Peggy, :)

I have enjoyed learning about pretty much everything that I have read and seen of Spain's history. I'm sure that I would love Toledo, but I haven't managed to get there yet, unfortunately. Yes, it is a fascinating country!


ceciliabeltran profile image

ceciliabeltran 6 years ago from New York

Nice!


Trish_M profile image

Trish_M 6 years ago from The English Midlands Author

Thank you Cecilia :)


BrianS profile image

BrianS 6 years ago from Castelnaudary, France

I think you would love the history of the Cathar region in France. Perhaps you have already written about it as I know from your comment that you have visited Carcassonne. What I have read I have found to be pretty fascinating, but I am always shocked by the cruelty displayed during the medieval periods.


Trish_M profile image

Trish_M 6 years ago from The English Midlands Author

Yes, I have visited Cathar country a few times and read several books on the subject ~ some traditional histories and some of the 'weird and wonderful' kind. All fascinating. Definitely a lot of sadness surrounds the area ~ you are right about the cruelty. I haven't written about it ~ not yet, anyway :)


Trish_M profile image

Trish_M 6 years ago from The English Midlands Author

And, sadly, plenty of cruelty is still displayed in the modern age ~ in certain places :)

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