The Moors

Mar 2015
7
Japan
Hi!
I believe the Moors are mainly of Berber stock with a few being of Arab stock. Also they invaded southern Spain. My question is how much of Portugal did they invade? Was it the entire country? Cheers for any thoughts. Chris
 
May 2017
1,201
Syria
Welcome to the forum! Although just a tip: This belongs in Medieval history as ancient history is dedicated for the civilizations of antiquity.

Anyways, since 714 and until the 10th century the Emirate of Cordoba occupied all the territory belonging now to modern-day Portugal, although by the beginning of the 10th century the territory gradually began decreasing to Leon-Galicia and by 1249 Portugal took its present day shape and the Grandan forces withdrew.
 
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johnincornwall

Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
7,860
Cornwall
Hi!
I believe the Moors are mainly of Berber stock with a few being of Arab stock. Also they invaded southern Spain. My question is how much of Portugal did they invade? Was it the entire country? Cheers for any thoughts. Chris
Welcome

Try and avoid the word 'moors'. It equates to 'mauri' or berber as you say. Yet many of the 'muslims' who made up Spain's population in the years 711-1611 were of other origins, such as arab, Syrian, Yemeni. The vast majority of Iberia's muslims were the original hispano-roman and Visigothic population who sooner or later converted.

It was less an 'invasion' than a takeover, with military support. The oppressive and dissolute Visigothic regime was such that it was a huge relief for most of the people, including jews and disenfranchised goths, to have a more enlightened ruler. It's the only way a relatively small berber force could get the better of what should be a huge and powerful Visigothic army. I won't go into all the reasons here but there are threads on it here if you can search.

Portugal of course did not exist. Roman Hispania was (eventually) taken over lock stock and barrel and maintained, after a fashion, by the Visigoths for around 200 years. It included all of Iberia, the Narbonne Province in southern France and Ceuta.

The muslim regime initially simply took over this almost exact footprint - another sign of pacting and connivance rather than conquest. Just as the Visigoths never really managed to subdue or garrison the very north coastal strips of Asturias, Cantabria and the Basque Country then neither, in turn, did the new regime. Sanchez Albornoz tells a different tale, but is nowadays thought to have been in error

What is now Portugal was of course wholly within muslim territory for 500 years - the people were muslim. As far as Galicia goes - the lords of Galicia seemed to have come down and offered their loyalty just after a rebellion in Toledo was harshly suppressed in 712. Personally I don't think Galicia was ever populated or garrisoned, although some suggest it was - until the Great Berber Revolt 3 of decades later.

At this time Cordoba rule was erratic and not centralised - mainly due to the varying 'ownership' of many local cities and regions - and there simply wasn't any need or resource to send troops there. They were occupied elsewhere
 
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May 2016
974
Nabataea
such as arab, Syrian, Yemeni.
You seem to make a distinction in that period, when it says Syrian army, or Syrian individual in the Umayyad period it mostly meant the Qaysi extraction, who were Arabs. There's an incident where a "Syrian" soldier refused to subscribe to the universally accepted interpretation of an-Nas (in the Qur'an) as being directed to "everyone, people" instead of message from god exclusively sent to the "Arabs". As for Yemeni, many boastfully composed poems from that period solely revolve around their pure Arabness.
 

johnincornwall

Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
7,860
Cornwall
You seem to make a distinction in that period, when it says Syrian army, or Syrian individual in the Umayyad period it mostly meant the Qaysi extraction, who were Arabs. There's an incident where a "Syrian" soldier refused to subscribe to the universally accepted interpretation of an-Nas (in the Qur'an) as being directed to "everyone, people" instead of message from god exclusively sent to the "Arabs". As for Yemeni, many boastfully composed poems from that period solely revolve around their pure Arabness.
I merely quote authors on this. 'Syrian' is one of the origins quoted, especially those (4000?) who got trapped in the Great Berber Revolt in North Africa and ended up evacuated to 'Spain', there to settle. I do not know like you of the composition of that army, but not all immigrants were soldiers.

I would guess that your average citizen/soldier in Syria was still of the original people whilst the elite were arab, much like North Africa and Al Andalus, but haven't read on it.

'Sudan' is another confusing origin of muslims to Spain, being in those days the area around Timbuctu, Gao, etc, the bottom of the Sahara trade routes
 
May 2016
974
Nabataea
I merely quote authors on this. 'Syrian' is one of the origins quoted, especially those (4000?) who got trapped in the Great Berber Revolt in North Africa and ended up evacuated to 'Spain', there to settle. I do not know like you of the composition of that army, but not all immigrants were soldiers.
Sure, Syrian, Najdi, Yemeni, Hijazi, Omani are used to describe various groups of Arabs in the early Islamic period. Muawiya married Maysun bint Bahdal (the daughter of Syrian Arab chief, herself was Christian) to lean Syrian Arabs towards him. From that period onwards Syrian Arabs played crucial role in the empire and were envied by non-Syrian Arabs.

However, I never encountered an author who would make such a distinction. Could you please cite similar examples?

I would guess that your average citizen/soldier in Syria was still of the original people whilst the elite were arab, much like North Africa and Al Andalus, but haven't read on it.
The "Arabs" were native to southern and western Syria. And no, the average soldier from Syria in the Umayyad context, was definitely, without a glance or shadow of doubt, an Arab. (#1 The Umayyads: the army mainly Arab and largely Syrian...) and for Iberia's theatre: "A Berber revolt in Spain in 741 was put down by a large army composed mainly of Syrian Arabs" (Islam and the Arabs, Rom Landau).
 
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May 2016
974
Nabataea
"However, while the Umayyad mawali may have provided a small core following, there can be no doubt that the vast majority of soldiers in the Syrian army were of Arab origin." (The Armies of the Caliphs: Military and Society in the Early Islamic State, page 32 - Hugh Kennedy)
 
May 2016
974
Nabataea
Were the Syrians already considered Arab even before Islamic times?
Your question is wrong (If I understood you correctly?), Syria is a region, and Syrian is someone from that region (simply). It have Arabs, Aramaeans and Phoenicians. The major inhabitants in antiquity were Aramaeans and Arabs. In fact "According to Strabo, Pliny and Ptolemy, much of the province of Syria was populated by Arabs and was therefore sprinkled with numerous "Arabias" already (nominally) under Roman rule." (Arabs, Arabias and Arabic before Late Antiquity - M.C.A Macdonald).
 

LatinoEuropa

Ad Honorem
Oct 2015
5,222
Matosinhos Portugal
The Moors occupied the Iberian peninsula year 711
The first Christian Kingdom to be born was the kingdom of Asturias, with the passing of the years other kingdoms were born in the Iberian Peninsula like kingdoms of Leon Castile Portucalense etc. The kingdom of Portucalense today Portugal had the beginning in the year 1095. In 1249 all the Moors were expelled from Portugal during that period Portugal and Castile had many battles territories of Portugal conquered to the Muslims the Castilians invaded Portugal to annex what the Portuguese had conquered to the Muslims, as happened with the war of the oranges in the 19th century, robbed us of Olivenza as other territories in North Africa starting with Ceuta.

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In portuguese.

Os mouros ocuparam a peninsula Ibérica ano 711
O primeiro Reino cristão a nascer foi o reino de Asturias,com o passar dos anos nasceram outros reinos na Peninsula Ibérica como reinos de Leon Castela Portucalense etc. O reino de Portucalense hoje Portugal teve o inicio no ano 1095. Em 1249 todos os mouros foram expulsos de Portugal durante esse periodo Portugal e Castela tiveram muitas batalhas territórios de Portugal conquistado aos mulçumanos os Castelhanos invadiam Portugal para anexar o que os portuguêses tinham conquistado aos mulçumanos,como aconteceu com a guerra das laranjas no século 19 nos roubaram a Olivênça como outros territórios no Norte de Africa a começar por Ceuta.





Batalha de Aljubarrota 1385 AD
Battle of Aljubarrota 1385 AD
 
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