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The History Of Spain

Updated on February 8, 2012

History of Spain

The name of Spain

The name of Spain, the evolution of the appointment of Hispania was the Roman Empire, until the eighteenth century, only descriptive of the Iberian Peninsula, not referring to a specific country or state, but the set of all the Iberian Peninsula and the countries included in it . Spain was unified during the Enlightenment, was until then a set of legally and politically independent kingdoms ruled by the same monarchy. Until the unification of the monarchy was formed by a group of kingdoms linked by inheritance and by conquest or dynastic union. The form of government was known as principaliter aequo, the kingdoms were ruled each one independently, as if each kingdom had its own king, each kingdom had its own legal system, its language, its forums and its privileges . The constitution of 1812 adopted the name The Spains for the new nation. The constitution of 1876 adopted the name for the first time Spain.

The terms "the Spains" and "Spain" were not equivalent and were used with great precision. The Spains The term referring to a set of legal and political units, that is, referring to a set of independent kingdoms, only the first Christian kingdoms of the Iberian peninsula, after only the United Kingdom on the same monarchy. The Spanish term referring to a geographical and cultural space that encompassed several independent kingdoms. From Charles V to use the title King of the Spains, referring to the part of Spain that did not include Portugal, but this designation was only one way to denote collectively a large number of kingdoms, an abbreviation, which had no legal validity, to a long list of titles whose real official way was king of Castile, Leon, Aragon, Navarre, Granada, Toledo, Valencia, of Galicia, Mallorca, Menorca, Sevilla etc.. (Just used the title to the Lusitania His Majesty the King of Portugal, or king Lusitano).

From 1645, with the Restoration of Independence in Portugal, the name King of Spain remained, despite the dynastic union no longer cover the entire peninsula.
The approach of the History of Spain is the most common to describe their initial topics in the history of the Iberian Peninsula to the periods prior to the conquest of America.

Pre History

The history of human presence in the Iberian Peninsula dates back to around 800 000years after the discovery of an early human ancestors in Atapuerca (Burgos) and what has been dubbed Homo predecessor. In 1848 he was found in a cave of the current British territory of Gibraltar a skull of a Neanderthal man who lived there would be about 60,000 years ago.

During the Upper Paleolithic, about 16,000 years ago, Magdalenian culture was present in Asturias, Cantabria and part of the Basque Country, whose record is more remarkable isthe presence of cave paintings in Altamira Cave. In the Middle Palaeolithic records of cave paintings were found in the Mediterranean area of the peninsula, mainly in what is now the province of Castellón.

In 5500 BC the peninsula appears Beaker culture or more accurately "Culture of the belljar." Around 3700 BC appear to megalithic culture and agriculture.

The appearance of cultures that used metals triggered around the years 3000 to 2500 BC The geographical distribution is larger and it is considered that the search for metalsbrought important migration flows, highlighting Los Millares in Almeria, with a great fortification, and course of the river Tejo in Portuguese area today.

History of Spain

Pre Roman Time

The Celts came to the peninsula in the first millennium BC, occupying the current Galicia, Asturias, Cantabria, Basque Country, north of much of Castile and Portugal.

The eastern peninsular coast was occupied first by the Phoenicians, until about 700 BC founded Gadir (Cadiz), Malaca (Malaga) and Abdera (Adra, Almería Province in the current).

The Greeks settled over the northern coast, Rhodes (Rose) and Emporion (Empúries), the current area of ​​Catalonia, the Iberians finding and bringing to today the first references of this people.

It is the moment in which the Tartessos appears as a civilization in the valley of the Guadalquivir. Historical data left by the Greeks tell us of these two cultures: the Celts and Iberians, some others to the north and south. Together they lived in the peninsula the Celtiberians in central Meseta, with cities like Numancia, the Lusitanian, Galician, Asturias, Cantabria and Vascones. The so-called Iberian civilization had its origin, according to most authors, in a mixture of Indo-European Celts, the Iberians autochthonous presence of Punic and Greek and early Romans.

The Celts came to the peninsula in the first millennium BC, occupying the current Galicia, Asturias, Cantabria, Basque Country, north of much of Castile and Portugal.
The eastern peninsular coast was occupied first by the Phoenicians, until about 700 BC founded Gadir (Cadiz), Malaca (Malaga) and Abdera (Adra, Almería Province in the current).

The Greeks settled over the northern coast, Rhodes (Rose) and Emporion (Empúries), the current area of ​​Catalonia, the Iberians finding and bringing to today the first references of this people.

It is the moment in which the Tartessos appears as a civilization in the valley of the Guadalquivir. Historical data left by the Greeks tell us of these two cultures: the Celts and Iberians, some others to the north and south. Together they lived in the peninsula the Celtiberians in central Meseta, with cities like Numancia, the Lusitanian, Galician, Asturias, Cantabria and Vascones. The so-called Iberian civilization had its origin, according to most authors, in a mixture of Indo-European Celts, the Iberians autochthonous presence of Punic and Greek and early Romans.

In the third century BC, the Carthaginians in the Iberian Peninsula starting a mediterranean imperialist project in which funds Qart Hadasht (Cartagena) that quickly becomes an important naval base.

Carthage and Rome finally faced a series of wars (Punic Wars) for hegemony in the Western Mediterranean. After the defeat in the First Punic War, Carthage tries to compensate for their loss of Sicily, Sardinia and Corsica, increasing its dominance in Iberia.

Hamilcar Barca, Hannibal Carthaginian generals and others are located in the ancient Phoenician colonies of Andalusia and the Levant, and come under its control after the conquest or extension of its area of ​​influence on indigenous peoples. At the end of the third century BC, most cities and towns south of the Duero and Ebro rivers, as well as the Balearic Islands, recognize the Carthaginian rule.

In the year 219 BC is produced Hannibal's offensive against Rome, taking the Iberian Peninsula as a base and including a large percentage of Hispanics in his army.

It was this process that tried to submit the Greek colony of Saguntum, located south of the border but the Ebro ally of Rome, giving rise to the Second Punic War, which culminated in the incorporation of the civilized part (Iberia) of the peninsula to the Roman Republic.

The Roman Time

After the Second Punic War between 218 BC and 201 BC, one can consider the Iberian peninsula subject to the power of Rome. The campaign of occupation, after the expulsion of Carthage, was rapid, except in the interior (Numancia) Cantabria and the people that endured until the arrival of Augustus in the early Roman Empire.

In 195 BC, the Romans divided the Iberian Peninsula into two zones: the Citerior HispaniaUlterior and Hispania. In 27 BC, Agrippa General created the provinces Tarraconense,Citerior ancient Hispania, the Andalusia and Lusitania, from Hispania Ulterior. In 216came the New Citerior Antoniniana Hispania in the northwest of the peninsula, where today about Asturias. Diocletian met these provinces, including the Balearic, and theCarthaginians Tingitana, forming the diocese of Hispania politically dependent of the Gauls.

The process of Romanization understood as the incorporation of the language, customsand the Roman economy began about 110 BC and lasted up with all his strength until mid-third century.

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    • writing4action profile imageAUTHOR

      writing4action 

      6 years ago

      Thanks. Cheers.

    • Phillbert profile image

      Phillip Drayer Duncan 

      6 years ago from The Ozarks

      very interesting and very well written!

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