Spanish History

Spanish History
  • Prehistory and Protohistory
  • Ancient History
  • From Carthage to Roman Hispania
  • Visigothic Spain
  • Muslim Spain and the Reconquest
  • Lower Middle Ages
  • Imperial Spain
  • Discovery of the Americas
  • 18th Century Spain
  • Effects of the French Revolution
  • The Second Republic and Civil War
  • Restoration to Democratic Rule

Imperial Spain

In 1464: Enrique IV of Castile names his sister Isabel, heir to the throne, disinheriting his daughter Juana, nicknamed 'La Beltraneja'. Internal conflicts lead to the marriage just three years later of Isabel, Queen of Castilia to Ferdinand, King of Aragon, which marked the period in which Spain was on the road to becoming extremely powerful. Despite the fact that both monarchs ruled jointly over both kingdoms, the two realms never actually fused; each monarch retained sovereignty over their respective kingdom.

The Catholic Monarchs, as Isabel and Ferdinand came to be known, managed to bring the Christian Re-conquest to a close by capturing Granada, the last remaining caliphate and stronghold in Spain, taking advantage of the rivalry existing among the last Muslim governors of Spain. Their effort to "re-Christianize" Spain resulted in the Spanish Inquisition , when thousands of Jews and Moors who refused to convert to Christianity were expelled or killed. The religious and cultural diversity of medieval times began to dissolve as royal power increased and consolidated its supremacy.