The Byzantine Empire took the opportunity with Justinian I to occupy a wide coastline from Alicante to the Portuguese south-Atlantic coast, including North Africa and the Balearic Islands. The new conquered territory was called the Province of Spania, and its capital was established in Carthago Spartaria (Cartagena), controlling a large part of the Spanish Mediterranean and the Strait of Gibraltar, and with it trade.
After the Byzantine attack, King Atanagildo transferred the capital to Toledo. Thanks to Leovigildo’s determined political action, the monarchy was strengthened in the second half of the 6th century, with achievements in various fields. He achieved a certain level of stability of the monarchy with monetary reforms, reestablishing sovereign control over territories that had been declared independent in the first half of the 6th century, the conquest of the Suevian Kingdom, as well as against the Byzantine facilities, many of which passed from again in Visigothic hands.
However, Leovigildo’s attempt to unify the country religiously, based on Arianism, failed. He lived his worst hours with the uprising of his son Hermenegildo in the south, converted to Catholicism. It was not until 584 that peace would be restored with the defeat of the son at the hands of the father. It was his son and successor Recaredo (586-601), Hermenegildo’s brother, who achieved this religious unity, but based on Catholicism. The conversion of the king and Baddo, his wife, was manifested in the transcendental III Council of Toledo. It is after this conversion that the Visigothic culture in Hispania is considered to have reached its zenith.
The relative peace that was breathed with Leovigildo and Recaredo, is truncated again. Liuva II, Witerico, Gundemaro and Recaredo II succeed each other and of them, the one who is not assassinated, even being a minor, dies in strange circumstances. Only Suintila (621-631), a great general, ended up expelling the Byzantines in 620. Recesvinto (649-672) will be recognized for his short-term legislative work (Liber Iudiciorum), improved by Wamba, but which will have a notable influence on the local charters from the 10th century on. A civil war after the death of King Witiza will lead to the fall of the Visigoth Kingdom of Toledo.
Main article: Al-Andalus
The rule of the Visigoths lasted until the year 711, when a Muslim army, with about 50,000 soldiers, crossed the Strait of Gibraltar, defeating the Visigoth army in the battle of Guadalete, near Cádiz. After this, the Islamic rule in Spain would begin, which is classified into four stages: the first from the year 711 to the year 756, the second from the year 756 to 929, the stage from the year 929 to 1031 in which the Caliphate is established and the last stage from 1031 to January 2, 1492 in which the Reconquest culminates. The term Al-Andalus is the way Muslims called Hispania and it was a more political than a geographical concept.
The Islamic conquest of the peninsula
Between the years 711 and 715, the Muslims occupied a part of the Iberian Peninsula, although without any type of effective dominion north of the Central System. The invasion and subsequent occupation of the southern peninsula was sustained with a military hand. The Mediterranean and the southernmost part suffered a demographic overflow of local populations, which adapted to the new situation.
The entry of Muslims in the peninsula occurred with the landing at Gibraltar on April 27 of the year 711, of Tariq ibn Ziyad lieutenant governor of Tangier (Musa bin Nusayr), who led an army of 9,000 men. Shortly after, on July 19, the Visigoths were defeated and their King Rodrigo died in the Battle of Guadalete. The occupation of the south of the peninsula with the massive implantation of North African populations occurred quickly. The presence of the Muslim invaders to the north of the Central System was, however, practically anecdotal, limited to garrisons from which to deepen their military incursions or raids.
The Caliphate of Córdoba
Of all the Islamic territories established in the Al-Andalus area, the Caliphate of Córdoba was one of the most powerful and the one that had the most impact on the history and culture of Spain, a country located in Europe according to PHILOSOPHYNEARBY, especially in terms of architecture. Founded in 929, Abd al-Rahmán III, when he declared independence in command of Baghdad, then capital of the Abbasid Caliphate. The power of the caliphate extended to the north and in 950 the Holy Roman-Germanic Empire exchanged ambassadors with Córdoba.
In 939 a Christian army led by Ramiro II de León defeated the Arab hosts sent by Abderramán III in one of their punishment operations (raids) against the north. The result of the battle dissuaded the Umayyads from their intention to install Arab populations in the vicinity of the Duero and its unpopulated areas.
The Umayyad is the most important political stage of the Islamic presence in the peninsula, although of short duration since in practice it ended in 1010 with the fitna or civil war that was unleashed by the throne among the supporters of the last legitimate caliph Hisham. II, and the successors of his prime minister or Hayib Almanzor. In the background there were also problems such as the crippling fiscal pressure necessary to finance the cost of the war effort in successive campaigns against the north that were increasingly burdensome. Officially, the Caliphate of Córdoba continued to exist until 1031, when it was abolished, leading to the fragmentation of the Umayyad state into a multitude of kingdoms known as the Taifa Kingdoms.