Friday, November 20, 2009


718: Pelayo, a noble Visigoth who has been elected king, defeats the Muslim Army in Alcama in the neighbourhood of Covadonga, thus beginning the Christian Reconquest of Spain.

750: The Christians, under Alfonso I, occupy Galicia, which had been abandoned by revolting Berber troops.

778: The army of Charlemagne suffers the defeat of Roncesvalles at the hands of the Vascons; death of Roland.

791 to 842: Alfonso II conquers a number of strongholds and settles the lands south of the river Duero.

873 to 898: Wilfredo the Hairy, Count of Barcelona, sets up a Christian kingdom with a certain degree of independence from the Frankish kings.

905 to 926: Sancho I Garces creates a Basque kingdom centred on Navarre.

930 to 950: Ramiro II, king of Leon, defeats Abd al-Rahman III at Simancas, Osma and Talavera.

950 to 951: Count Fernan Gonzalez lays the foundations for the independence of Castile.

981: Ramiro III is defeated by Almansur at Rueda and is obliged to pay tribute to the Caliph of Cordova.

999 to 1018: Alfonso V of Leon reconstructs his kingdoms.

1000 to 1033: Sancho III of Navarre subdues the counties of Aragon, Sobrarbe and Ribagorza, takes possession of the County of Castile and makes an arrangement with Bermudo III of Leon with the idea of taking away his dominions from him and proclaiming himself as emperor. However, on his death, he leaves Navarre to his son Garcia III, Castile to Fernando I, and Aragon, Sobrarbe and Ribagorza to Ramiro I.

1035 to 1063: Fernando I conquers Coimbra and obliges the Muslims of Toledo, Seville and Badajoz to pay him tribute. Before his death, he shares out his territories between his sons: Castile goes to Sancho II and Leon to Alfonso VI.

1065 to 1109: Alfonso VI unites the two kingdoms under his sceptre and takes Toledo.

1086: The Christian advance ogliges the Muslim kings of Granada, Seville and Badajoz to call to their aid the Almoravides.

1102: The followers of the Cid leave Valencia and the African Muslims occupy the Peninsula as far as Saragossa (Zaragoza).

1118: Alfonso I of Aragon conquers Saragossa.

1135: Alfonso VII of Leon restores the prestige of the Leonese monarchy and is proclaimed emperor.

1151: The Almohades, another African dynasty who have displaced the Almoravides, retake Almaria.

1162: Alfonso II, son of Petronila and Ramon Berenguer IV, unites in his person the kingdom of Aragon and the County of Barcelona.

1195: The Almohades defeat the Castilians at Alarcos.

1212: Culmination of the Reconquest. Alfonso VIII of Castile, helped by Sancho VIII of Navarre, Pedro II of Aragon and some troops from Portugal and Leon, is victorious in the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa.

1229: Jaime I of Aragon, the Conqueror, reconquers Marllorca.

1230: Alfonso IX of Leon advances along the River Guadiana, takes Merida and Badajoz and opens up the way for the conquest of Seville.

1217 to 1252: Fernando III, king of Castile and Leon, conquers Cordova, Murcia, Jaen and Seville. Granada remains as the sole independent Muslim kingdom.

1252 to 1284: Alfonso X the Wise continues the reconquest and is obliged to face the 'Mudejar' revolts of Andalusia and Murcia. He seeks election as emperor of the Holy Roman Empire in 1257. Alfonso X drafts the 'Fuero de las Leyes', the forerunner of the 'Siete Partidas'.

1284: An assembly of nobles, prelates and citizens depose Alfonso X and hand over power to his son Sancho IV.

1309: Fernando IV takes Gibraltar.

1312 to 1350: Alfonso XI fights the kingdom of Granada for 25 years and in 1340 wins the battle of Rio Salado.

1369: Pedro I the Cruel is murdered in Montiel by his half brother Enrique de Trastamara, who then governs as Enrique II.

1385: The Portuguese defeat the Castilians in Aljubarrota.

1464: Enrique IV of Castile names as heir to the throne his sister, the future Isabel I, the Catholic, and disinherits his daughter Juana, nicknamed 'La Beltraneja'.

1469: Isabel I of Castile and Fernando II of Aragon are married, thus cunsummating the unity of Spain.

1492: The Catholic Monarchs, Isabel and Fernando, complete the Reconquest by taking Granada (January 2nd), taking advantage of the rivalry of the last Muslim governors of Spain. Discovery of America (October 12th).

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