Facts about king ferdinand and queen isabella
Isabella: The Warrior Queen by Kirstin DowneyAn engrossing and revolutionary biography of Isabella of Castile, the controversial Queen of Spain who sponsored Christopher Columbuss journey to the New World, established the Spanish Inquisition, and became one of the most influential female rulers in history
Born at a time when Christianity was dying out and the Ottoman Empire was aggressively expanding, Isabella was inspired in her youth by tales of Joan of Arc, a devout young woman who unified her people and led them to victory against foreign invaders. In 1474, when most women were almost powerless, twenty-three-year-old Isabella defied a hostile brother and mercurial husband to seize control of Castile and Leon.
Her subsequent feats were legendary. She ended a twenty-four-generation struggle between Muslims and Christians, forcing Moorish invaders back over the Mediterranean Sea. She laid the foundation for a unified Spain. She sponsored Columbuss trip to the Indies and negotiated Spanish control over much of the New World with the help of Rodrigo Borgia, the infamous Pope Alexander VI. She also annihilated all who stood against her by establishing a bloody religious Inquisition that would darken Spains reputation for centuries.
Whether saintly or satanic, no female leader has done more to shape our modern world, where millions of people in two hemispheres speak Spanish and practice Catholicism. Yet history has all but forgotten Isabellas influence, due to hundreds of years of misreporting that often attributed her accomplishments to Ferdinand, the bold and philandering husband she adored.
Using new scholarship, Downeys luminous biography tells the story of this brilliant, fervent, forgotten woman, the faith that propelled her through life, and the land of ancient conflicts and intrigue she brought under her command.
Biography of Isabella I, Queen of Spain
The two young monarchs had initially to fight a civil war against Juana, princess of Castile also known as Juana la Beltraneja , the purported daughter of Henry IV. They were ultimately successful. Ferdinand succeeded his father as King of Aragon in and the Crown of Castile and the various territories of the Crown of Aragon were united in a personal union. For the first time since the 8th century this created a single political unit which might be called Spain , although the various territories were not properly administered as a single unit until the 18th century. The first decades of Ferdinand and Isabella's joint rule were taken up with the conquest of the Kingdom of Granada , the last Muslim enclave in the Iberian peninsula. This was completed by In that same year, the Jews were expelled from both Castile and Aragon, and Christopher Columbus was sent by the couple on his expedition which would ultimately discover the New World.
Her marriage to Ferdinand II of Aragon in became the basis for the de facto unification of Spain. After a struggle to claim her right to the throne, she reorganized the governmental system, brought the crime rate to the lowest it had been in years, and unburdened the kingdom of the enormous debt her brother had left behind. Her reforms and those she made with her husband had an influence that extended well beyond the borders of their united kingdoms. Isabella and Ferdinand are known for completing the Reconquista , ordering conversion or exile of their Muslim and Jewish subjects, and for supporting and financing Christopher Columbus 's voyage that led to the opening of the New World and to the establishment of Spain as the first global power which dominated Europe and much of the world for more than a century. Her younger brother Alfonso of Castile was born two years later on 17 November , lowering her position to third in line. Isabella and her brother Alfonso were left in King Henry's care.
All rights reserved. Isabella of Castile should never have been queen.
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Not only did this bring wealth to Spain, but the lands discovered were now owned by Castile. When Native Americans were brought back as slaves, Isabella demanded that they be set free.
King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella were the first monarchs to rule a united Spain. They are remembered for sponsoring Christopher Columbus' voyage across the Atlantic in But the importance of their reign was even more far-reaching. This union laid the foundation of a mighty empire. It dominated Europe and the New World for well over years. Isabella I of Castile was born on April 22, They married in , the year Isabella became queen of Castile.
Ferdinand and Isabella were the monarchs whose marriage created the union of Castile and Aragon which formed the Kingdom of Spain. Because of their religious zeal, they became known as the "Catholic monarchs. On the death of Henry IV in , Isabella and Ferdinand began to reign in Castile, then with the accession of Ferdinand to the throne of Aragon in , the two realms were united. In its first phase their policy adhered to the tradition of relative tolerance which characterized the attitude of the kings of Christian Spain. Generally, this was expressed in their willingness to extend their protection to Jewish communities or individuals whenever they were subjected to outbursts of mob hatred and fury instigated by monks. The first sign of deterioration in their attitude toward the Jews can be detected when, at a session of the Cortes held in April at Madrigal, the monarchs promulgated sweeping edicts for judicial and administrative reforms, including revocation of all the rights of the aljamas "communities" to exercise criminal jurisdiction. Resolving that unified Spain should also be united in faith, they determined to eradicate the sin of heresy which had spread amid the Conversos, namely the tendency to revert to Judaism.