Category Archives: Medieval Spain

Battle of Rio Salado Part 3

Out now – The Battle of Rio Salado 1340 and the subsequent Siege of Algeciras were the key moments in the struggle for the Straits of Gibraltar between Christian Spain, the Muslim Marinid dynasty of Morocco and the Sultanate of Granada, the last remaining Muslim state in Iberia

Staits Of Gibraltar

Battle Of Rio Salado

Battle of Rio Salado, Part 2, Gibraltar Crusade

The Gibraltar Crusades is the name given to the struggle for control of the Straits between Spain and Morocco in the 13th and 14th centuries. It was a three-way conflict between the Kingdom of Castile, the Marinid dynasty of Morocco, and the Sultanate of Granada, the last Muslim state in Iberia

Map of Granada in Medieval Spain
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Example of Architecture of the Marinid Dynasty – The Al-Attarine Madrasa in Fez, Morocco
Al Attarine Madrasa, Fez, Marinid

Battle of Rio Salado 1340 Part 1

Out now – The Battle of Rio Salado 1340, Part 1. After the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa 1212 the Christians of Iberia, especially the Castilians, are able to conquer much territory from the Muslims. Plus an overview of thirteenth century Spain (pictured – Alhambra palace of the Sultanate of Granada)

Alhambra

Las Navas de Tolosa 1212, Part 5

Caliph al-Nasir, also known as Miramamolin invades Spain with a huge Muslim army which is met in the Sierra Nevada mountains by a Christian army, including King Alfonso VIII of Castile, Pedro/Peter II of Aragon and Sancho VII of Navarre. Pictured – King Sancho VII of Navarre breaks through the Caliph’s bodyguards of black African slave-warriors. Tapestry by Vicente Pascual, 1950

las navas de tolosa tapestry

Las Navas de Tolosa 1212, Part 3


The Almohads arrive in Spain from North Africa and threaten to overwhelm the peninsula. The greatest resistance comes not from the Christian kingdoms, but from a fellow Muslim known as ‘El Rey Lobo’ (The Wolf King), head of a kingdom based in Murcia, a city in its golden age

Las Navas de Tolosa 1212, Part 2

The birth of the kingdom of Portugal, the Siege of Lisbon, and the Union of Aragon and Catalonia – the political map of the peninsula begins to form. Pictured: King Afonso I of Portugal, nicknamed “the Conqueror”, “the Founder” or “the Great”

 

Las Navas de Tolosa 1212, Part 1

Before 1085 in Spain there was little question that it was the Muslims who had the upper hand in the balance of power. But after King Alfonso VI captured the city of Toledo in 1085, the Christians became much more confident and threatened to rapidly take over the whole peninsula. Why this didn’t happen can be explained for two reasons – firstly, the infighting between Christian rulers, and secondly, the influx of Muslim peoples from north Africa, firstly the Almoravids

Fall of Toledo 1085, Part 3


King Ferdinand I of Leon and Castile and his sons Sancho and Alfonso, as depicted in the epic Hollywood film El Cid (see picture). Plus, the conflict between Aragon and Zaragoza, the arrival of crusaders from across the Pyrenees, and the Siege of Barbastro.

The Christian Kings of Spain

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The Mulsim Taifa Kings

el cid moors