Frankish defeat by Muslims = no modern civilisation?

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Closed
Sep 2014
917
Texas
Then why was Islamic Andalusia more culturally distinguished than that of Byzantine Andalusia?

Romans did a thing or two for the province......but wasn't that more in the pagan period?

Even if what you said was right, might Islamic Andalusia might have been better run the Visigothic, or even Byzantine Andalusia (hence why they were able to overrun it in the first place?
it wasn't. Seville was the light that shone in the darkness that was sweeping across Western Europe in the form of the Germans and Huns. St. Isidore spoke highly of his beloved city. The beauty of Muslim Seville hid a dark cancer of slavery. Many Europeans were shipped through this region South into Africa. But we all have our own aesthetics. According to British authors everything that was glorious about Spain died the day before the Moors arrived.
 
Nov 2010
7,648
Cornwall
The part of Spain that they inhabited had been the last realm of Rome/Constantinople in the West. People give the Moslems too much credit for not destroying what the Romans had built.
Don't confuse Visigothic Hispania (which the arab empire inherited almost exactly) with Byzantine province of Spania. They hadn't been there that long at all really, from the last dying breaths of Justinians' imperial expansion.

Spania is an odd one. Almost totally unsupported after a while form Constantinople. Yet Leovigildo was a big fan of Imperial systems and modelled his own construction of the Visigothic state of Toledo on them. I'm not too sure how violent or how peaceful the long slow death of Spania was. It is fairly certain that Cartagena was destroyed - possibly along with everybody in it, never to be rebuilt under the Goths - who didn't like fortresses (which probably played some part in their downfall). Because they didn't have the means to besiege, they destroyed fortresses and defences, presumably in case some rebel or other made themselves strong there. (They didn't seem to plan much for foreign invasions beyond 'the army' which, as we know, was unable to function effectively in 711/12).

From Recaredo onwards the Visigoths were of course Catholics, just like the Empire. One theory is that the rabid and increasing anti-jewish legislation and behaviour, coincided with the loss of the Holy Land to Sassenids supported by Jews. The persecution beginnings seem to coincide in time with this. Which is another thing that came back to bite them on the behind in 711/12
 
Nov 2013
705
Texas
it wasn't. Seville was the light that shone in the darkness that was sweeping across Western Europe in the form of the Germans and Huns. St. Isidore spoke highly of his beloved city. The beauty of Muslim Seville hid a dark cancer of slavery. Many Europeans were shipped through this region South into Africa. But we all have our own aesthetics. According to British authors everything that was glorious about Spain died the day before the Moors arrived.
Which British authors? Say, Stanley Lane Poole:


“For nearly eight centuries, under her Mohammedan rulers, Spain set to all Europe a shining example of a civilized and enlightened State. Her fertile provinces, rendered doubly prolific by the industry and engineering skill of her conquerors, bore fruit an hundredfold. Cities innumerable sprang up in the rich valleys of the Guadelquivir and the Guadiana, whose names, and names only, still commemorate the vanished glories of their past. Art, literature, and science prospered, as they then prospered nowhere else in Europe. Students flocked from France and Germany and England to drink from the fountain of learning which flowed only in the cities of the Moors. The surgeons and doctors of Andalusia were in the van of science: women were encouraged to devote themselves to serious study, and the lady doctor was not unknown among the people of Cordova. Mathematics, astronomy and botany, history, philosophy and jurisprudence were to be mastered in Spain, and Spain alone. The practical work of the field, the scientific methods of irrigation, the arts of fortification and shipbuilding, the highest and most elaborate products of the loom, the graver and the hammer, the potter's wheel and the mason's trowel, were brought to perfection by the Spanish Moors. In the practice of war no less than in the arts of peace they long stood supreme.”
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(Even I, the poster think Stanley Lane Poole is overselling it a wee bit; it was only for a couple of centuries that Islamic rule of Iberia was anywhere near as enlightened as he portrays IMO. Still, one thing I notice about women is they like to put words in other people's mouths, and I suggest you stop doing the same for British scholars.) Stanley Lane Poole is far from anecdotal; I'd even say overpraise is Islamic Iberia is too common; I cite another British scholar (Joseph McCabe):

I must be content to say that immeasurably the strongest stimulation that began to awaken Christendom from its medieval nightmare came from the brilliant civilization which liberal Arabs and Persians had now created in Spain, Sicily and the east. It was because the Normans settled in Sicily that they were civilized so rapidly; it was because the Albigensians, or the people of the south of France, were the nearest neighbours of the Arabs of Spain that they rose to a high civilization. The full truth about the reawakening of Europe at this stage is so fatal to the legend of Christian inspiration that history is only now daring to tell it.
  • Joseph McCabe, The Social Record of Christianity (1935), Book Tree, 2000, p. 61
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As for Slavery; hardly unique to Islam; it was practiced extensively by the Greeks, the Romans, or even Medieval western Europe (especially in the early phases if I am not mistaken.......)
 
Last edited:
Sep 2014
917
Texas
Which British authors? Say, Stanley Lane Poole:


“For nearly eight centuries, under her Mohammedan rulers, Spain set to all Europe a shining example of a civilized and enlightened State. Her fertile provinces, rendered doubly prolific by the industry and engineering skill of her conquerors, bore fruit an hundredfold. Cities innumerable sprang up in the rich valleys of the Guadelquivir and the Guadiana, whose names, and names only, still commemorate the vanished glories of their past. Art, literature, and science prospered, as they then prospered nowhere else in Europe. Students flocked from France and Germany and England to drink from the fountain of learning which flowed only in the cities of the Moors. The surgeons and doctors of Andalusia were in the van of science: women were encouraged to devote themselves to serious study, and the lady doctor was not unknown among the people of Cordova. Mathematics, astronomy and botany, history, philosophy and jurisprudence were to be mastered in Spain, and Spain alone. The practical work of the field, the scientific methods of irrigation, the arts of fortification and shipbuilding, the highest and most elaborate products of the loom, the graver and the hammer, the potter's wheel and the mason's trowel, were brought to perfection by the Spanish Moors. In the practice of war no less than in the arts of peace they long stood supreme.”
=================


(Even I, the poster think Stanley Lane Poole is overselling it a wee bit; it was only for a couple of centuries that Islamic rule of Iberia was anywhere near as enlightened as he portrays IMO. Still, one thing I notice about women is they like to put words in other people's mouths, and I suggest you stop doing the same for British scholars.) Stanely Lane Poole is far from anecdotal I'd even say overpraise is Islamic Iberia is too common; I cite another British scholar (Joseph McCabe):

I must be content to say that immeasurably the strongest stimulation that began to awaken Christendom from its medieval nightmare came from the brilliant civilization which liberal Arabs and Persians had now created in Spain, Sicily and the east. It was because the Normans settled in Sicily that they were civilized so rapidly; it was because the Albigensians, or the people of the south of France, were the nearest neighbours of the Arabs of Spain that they rose to a high civilization. The full truth about the reawakening of Europe at this stage is so fatal to the legend of Christian inspiration that history is only now daring to tell it.
  • Joseph McCabe, The Social Record of Christianity (1935), Book Tree, 2000, p. 61
==================


As for Slavery; hardly unique to Islam; it was practiced extensively by the Greeks, the Romans, or even Medieval western Europe (especially in the early phases if I am not mistaken.......)
 
Sep 2014
917
Texas
My historical specialty is horses. I wrote Timeline for the Development of the Horse and i spent a lot of my Timeline discussing the Spanish war against the Muslims..and that was what it was. Now I'm not going to bore you with the details, but the Spaniards were adament about breaking up the slave trade in the Mediterranean. Ironically it was their prisoners of war who made up the first slaves in America. The British surprisingly were highly tolerant of it. They also set about rewriting Spanish history to make themselves the good guys.
 
Nov 2010
7,648
Cornwall
it wasn't. Seville was the light that shone in the darkness that was sweeping across Western Europe in the form of the Germans and Huns. St. Isidore spoke highly of his beloved city. The beauty of Muslim Seville hid a dark cancer of slavery. Many Europeans were shipped through this region South into Africa. But we all have our own aesthetics. According to British authors everything that was glorious about Spain died the day before the Moors arrived.
It's an odd passage because Sevilla wasn't capital of Al Andalus until the Almoravids and more certainly the Almohads came along. In the time he seems to be talking about it was Cordoba. Emphatically. Odd, very odd.

My historical specialty is horses. I wrote Timeline for the Development of the Horse and i spent a lot of my Timeline discussing the Spanish war against the Muslims..and that was what it was. .
You see there's a massive misconception here. If you are talking about the War of Granada 1482-92 then that sort of description may fit the War against the kingdom of Granada, once Spain had (more or less) formed into what it is today. It may also fit if you talk about the invading berber empires the Almoravids and Almohads, who fought against Spanish Muslims and Christians.

But if you look at the whole pre-Almoravid period right from 711 to the end of the 11th century, the muslim kingdoms and Caliphate covering large parts of Iberia was made up by a relatively few immigrants/invaders and a massive majority of Hispano-Roman-Gothic population, which hadn't disappeared anywhere, and was still 'Spanish' and converted to islam. The Christian kingdoms, orginally tiny populations, came gradually to be made up and enlarged by immigrants largely from France and beyond over the centuries, fueld not least by the whole Santiago thing.

The 'Spanish population' became largely muslim, if you want to look at it that way, from 711 to 1008-ish. Meanwhile Christian Leon, Castilla, Navarra, Aragon and Barcelona spent a great deal of time fighting each other for space and land.

So Spanish against Spanish?
 
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Sep 2014
917
Texas
It's an odd passage because Sevilla wasn't capital of Al Andalus until the Almoravids and more certainly the Almohads came along. In the time he seems to be talking about it was Cordoba. Emphatically. Odd, very odd.



You see there's a massive misconception here. If you are talking about the War of Granada 1482-92 then that sort of description may fit the War against the kingdom of Granada, once Spain had (more or less) formed into what it is today. It may also fit if you talk about the invading berber empires the Almoravids and Almohads, who fought against Spanish Muslims and Christians.

But if you look at the whole pre-Almoravid period right from 711 to the end of the 11th century, the muslim kingdoms and Caliphate covering large parts of Iberia was made up by a relatively few immigrants/invaders and a massive majority of Hispano-Roman-Gothic population, which hadn't disappeared anywhere, and was still 'Spanish' and converted to islam. The Christian kingdoms, orginally tiny populations, came gradually to be made up and enlarged by immigrants largely from France and beyond over the centuries, fueld not least by the whole Santiago thing.

The 'Spanish population' became largely muslim, if you want to look at it that way, from 711 to 1008-ish. Meanwhile Christian Leon, Castilla, Navarra, Aragon and Barcelona spent a great deal of time fighting each other for space and land.

So Spanish against Spanish?
So it appears, but my grief has always been with the way the British wrote about this time period, dismissing everything Spanish in favor of the invaders. As I said, my thing is horse history. The royal horses at Seville did not die off the day the Moors arrived.
 
Nov 2013
705
Texas
So it appears, but my grief has always been with the way the British wrote about this time period, dismissing everything Spanish in favor of the invaders. As I said, my thing is horse history. The royal horses at Seville did not die off the day the Moors arrived.
So now, upon it being pointed out that even British scholars have praised Islamic rule of Iberia before, you now imply it is but British bias to praise these "Moors".

I thus cite non-British scholars such as Voltaire

These Moors cultivated the sciences with success, and taught Spain and Italy for five centuries.
  • Voltaire, A Philosophical Dictionary, J. and H. L. Hunt, 1843, p. 172
(mercy, overpraise of Islamic Iberia is too common, I am not sure most of their provinces were as cultivated as Andalusia in the period of 802-1002, or Grenada afterwards.....)
 

martin76

Ad Honorem
Dec 2014
6,507
Spain
That is a Spanish speciality for centuries.

No way! It would be as to say a British speciality for centuries...Swiiss speciality... French Specialistist... Do you want dear Tulius a list of French Civil Wars in the last 500 years? German Speciality... Dutch Speciality....etc etc etc

In fact, not Religious War at all in Spain as yes in France, Germany, Netherland, Britain etc

Moors taught nothing becuse they were semi-barbarian (not even full islamized in 8th Century) so we are talking about Arabs... I guess
 
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