When the Moors Ruled in Europe – History of Islam in Spain. Part 1 1

Moors in SpainThis is a British Channel 4 two-part documentary from 2005. In two one-hour sections. It presents in a well-documented and accesible way the story of the Muslim conquest of the Iberian peninsula and their nearly 800-year domination here. The name al-Andalus generally describes parts of the Iberian Peninsula and Septimania governed by Muslims or “Moors” at various times between 711 and 1492, though the boundaries changed constantly in wars with Christian kingdoms. The Channel 4 team, headed by presenter, Bettany Hughes, goes beyond the mythical treacherous and bloodthirsty Moor with a curved scimitar to delve into the society and daily life of Muslim society in medieval Iberia, a civilization which enjoyed advanced knowledge of science, medicine and literature, as well as a high degree of tolerance among the three religions of the book: Islam, Christianity and Judaeism. (Photo credit: Wikipedia, Spain in 750 a.d.)

With all of the written history of al-Andalus destroyed by the reconquering Christians, the most important remnant of this period remaining to us is Granada’s Alhambra fortress and palace, which Bettany describes as “a box of secrets that we can use to decode the civilization that built it.”

Here’s the link to When the Moors Rule in Europe – History of Islam in Spain. Part 1:


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  1. Pingback: ¡Alegria!’s Benchmark Articles Collection « ¡Alegría! The Joy of Spanish Living

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