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

Visigothic Spain

The Visigoth kingdom of Toulouse thrived until well into the 8th Centruy. As a nominal vassal of Rome, it included the territory from the Strait of Gibraltar north to the River Loire in present-day France. This kingdom was significant in that it constituted a first approach at Peninsular unity with independence from the rest of the Roman Empire.

With the Visigoths, the Pyrenees and Gibraltar were no longer considered to be mere ways of passage - they took on primal importance as valuable frontiers to be jealously guarded.

In 586 the conversion of Recared, Leovigild's heir, to Catholicism removes the final barriers between Goths and Hispano-Romans, finally consolidating the Hispanic-Visigothic kingdom.

In 711, disagreements between the last Visigoth king, Rodrigo, and the sons of Vitiza, created favorable circumstances for a Muslim invasion. Muslim troops crossed the Strait of Gibraltar and defeated Rodrigo at the battle of Guadalete.