Moors in Spain

moors in spainThe Visigoths were united by their military goals; however, once the military struggle for power was over and done with, their unity and strength faltered in a relatively short period of time. By the 8th century, AD, the Moors were well on their way to opening one of the most important epochs of Spanish history.

The Moorish conquest, unlike the Roman conquest and - to an even greater degree - the later Christian Reconquest, swept the country at record-making speed. How? The Moors had a two-fold approach to their conquest; along with military force when necessary, the Moors granted limited autonomy and religious tolerance in exchange for being given control. The land under Moorish rule - which constantly grew and dwindled over the centuries - became known as Al-Andalus and, depending on the region of Spain, lasted for anywhere from three to eight centuries of Spanish history.islamic spain

At first, Spain's Islamic Empire was under the jurisdiction of the Baghdad-led Eastern Caliphate; the Spanish branch, however, didn't waste anytime in proclaiming itself the Western Islamic Empire, centering its power in Córdoba. Following the 10th century declaration by ruler at the time Abd ar-Rahman III, Muslim Spain launched into one of the most affluent chapters of Spanish history- every bit economically as intellectually, philosophically, architecturally and artistically. Sophistication was the name of the game as urban growth soared, artistic creativity gave Spanish architecture - particularly in Andalucía - an elegant and exotic touch, and advanced engineering projects yielded incredible irrigation systems that are still used today.

However, as with the preceding civilizations of Spanish history, the internal divisions of the Caliphate into separate taifas chipped away little-by-little at the Moors' unity. Cue the Christian Reconquest.