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During the night, ten miles of streets were well illuminated by lamps. This was hundreds of years before there was a paved street in Paris or a street lamp in London. Cordova had public baths — we are told that a poor Moor would go without bread rather than soap! Its low scarlet and gold roof, supported by 1, columns of marble, jasper and and porphyry, was lit by thousands of brass and silver lamps which burned perfumed oil.

Education was universal in Moorish Spain, available to all, while in Christian Europe ninety-nine percent of the population were illiterate, and even kings could neither read nor write. At that time, Europe had only two universities, the Moors had seventeen great universities! In the tenth and eleventh centuries, public libraries in Europe were non-existent, while Moorish Spain could boast of more than seventy, of which the one in Cordova housed six hundred thousand manuscripts.

Armigers bearing moors or moors' heads may have adopted them for any of several reasons, to include symbolizing military victories in the Crusades , as a pun on the bearer's name in the canting arms of Morese, Negri, Saraceni, etc. The use of Moors and particularly their heads as a heraldic symbol has been deprecated in modern North America. Most writings on Moors applied darkness of skin as a trait for any and every Muslim invader of Europe.

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about a historical group of Muslims. For other uses, see Moor. Mauri people and Mauretania. Umayyad conquest of Hispania and Al-Andalus. List of Berbers and List of Arab scientists and scholars. The History and Description of Africa. Retrieved 30 August Ornament of the World , p. Portuguese Expansion and the Writing of Africa.

U of Minnesota Press. Ornament of the World: Retrieved March 12, In one sense the word 'Moor' means Mohammedan Berbers and Arabs of North-western Africa, with some Syrians, who conquered most of Spain in the 8th century and dominated the country for hundreds of years.

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Ceylon and the Hollanders Retrieved 28 September In the year , Mazara was occupied by the Arabs, who made the city an important commercial harbour. That period was probably the most prosperous in the history of Mazara. The Mirror of Spain, The Formation of a Myth. University of Michigan Press. Lewis and Short, Latin Dictionary , s. With Supplements, Volume 1 D. Retrieved 30 May Geopolitics of European Union enlargement: European discourses, policies and practices. Multiculturalism, Muslims and citizenship: Editorial Galaxia, , p. Hussein 'From where did the moors come from? University of California Press.

The Legacy of Muslim Spain. Leo Africanus first ed. University of California Press, A Glossary of Terms Used in Heraldry. Victoria and Albert Museum. Andrea Cordero Lanza di Montezemolo. Flags of the World. Schmalz refers to a discussion on the American Heraldry Society's website where at least one participant described the moor's head as a "potentially explosive image". Goa, yesterday, to-day, tomorrow: Tribal hegemony in the former Western Roman Empire from the decline of Rome to Retrieved from " https: Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference Articles containing Ancient Greek-language text Articles with Spanish-language external links Articles with Portuguese-language external links Webarchive template wayback links All articles lacking reliable references Articles lacking reliable references from January Articles containing Konkani-language text Articles containing Arabic-language text All articles with unsourced statements Articles with unsourced statements from August Pages using columns with the default column width Wikipedia articles with GND identifiers Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers.

Views Read Edit View history. In other projects Wikimedia Commons Wikiquote. This page was last edited on 16 September , at By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Wikiquote has quotations related to: The work of its most important philosophers and scientists notably Abulcasis and Averroes had a major influence on the intellectual life of medieval Europe.

Muslims and non-Muslims often came from abroad to study in the famous libraries and universities of al-Andalus, mainly after the reconquest of Toledo in and the establishment of translation institutions such as the Toledo School of Translators. The most noted of those was Michael Scot c. This transmission of ideas remains one of the greatest in history, significantly affecting the formation of the European Renaissance. Eventually raids turned into conquests, and in response the Taifa kings were forced to request help from the Almoravids , Muslim Berber rulers of the Maghreb.

Their desperate maneuver would eventually fall to their disadvantage, however, as the Almoravids they had summoned from the south went on to conquer and annex all the Taifa kingdoms.

  • The Story of the Moors After Spain: Stanley Lane-poole: Books.
  • The Moorish Influence in the Spanish Language.
  • Al-Andalus.

In that year, Tashfin crossed the straits to Algeciras and inflicted a severe defeat on the Christians at the Battle of Sagrajas. By , ibn Tashfin had removed all Muslim princes in Iberia and had annexed their states, except for the one at Zaragoza. He also regained Valencia from the Christians. The Almohads continued to rule Al-Andalus for another decade, though with much reduced power and prestige.

The civil wars following the death of Abu Ya'qub Yusuf II rapidly led to the re-establishment of taifas.

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The taifas, newly independent but now weakened, were quickly conquered by Portugal, Castile, and Aragon. After the fall of Murcia and the Algarve , only the Emirate of Granada survived as a Muslim state, and only as a tributary of Castile until Most of its tribute was paid in gold that was carried to Iberia from present-day Mali and Burkina Faso through the merchant routes of the Sahara.

The last Muslim threat to the Christian kingdoms was the rise of the Marinids in Morocco during the 14th century. They took Granada into their sphere of influence and occupied some of its cities, like Algeciras. Gibraltar , then under Granadian rule, was besieged in — Alfonso XI and most of his army perished by the Black Death.

His successor, Peter of Castile , made peace with the Muslims and turned his attention to Christian lands, starting a period of almost years of rebellions and wars between the Christian states that secured the survival of Granada. From the mid 13th to the late 15th century, the only remaining domain of al-Andalus was the Emirate of Granada , the last Muslim stronghold in the Iberian Peninsula.

The emirate was established by Muhammad ibn al-Ahmar in and was ruled by the Nasrid dynasty , the longest reigning dynasty in the history of al-Andalus. Although surrounded by Castilian lands, the emirate was wealthy through being tightly integrated in Mediterranean trade networks and enjoyed a period of considerable cultural and economic prosperity.

The city of Granada also served as a refuge for Muslims fleeing during the Reconquista , accepting numerous Muslims expelled from Christian controlled areas, doubling the size of the city [31] and even becoming one of the largest in Europe throughout the 15th century in terms of population. In , the marriage of Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile signaled the launch of the final assault on the emirate. The Catholic Monarchs crushed one center of resistance after another until finally on January 2, , after a long siege, the emirate's last sultan Muhammad XII surrendered the city and the fortress palace, the renowned Alhambra see Fall of Granada.

By this time Muslims in Castile numbered half a million. After the fall, ", had died or been enslaved, , emigrated, and , remained as the residual population. Many of the Muslim elite, including Muhammad XII , who had been given the area of the Alpujarras mountains as a principality, found life under Christian rule intolerable and passed over into North Africa.

Mass forced conversions of Muslims in led to a revolt that spread to Alpujarras and the mountains of Ronda ; after this uprising the capitulations were revoked. From then on, indigenous Islam is considered to have been extinguished in Spain. The society of al-Andalus was made up of three main religious groups: Muslims, Christians, and Jews. The Muslims, although united on the religious level, had several ethnic divisions, the main being the distinction between the Arabs and the Berbers.

The Arab elite regarded non-Arab Muslims as second-class citizens; and they were particularly scornful of the Berbers. The ethnic structure of al-Andalus consisted of Arabs at the top of the social scale followed by, in descending order, Berbers, Muladies , Mozarabes , and Jews. In the 10th century a massive conversion of Christians took place, and muladies Muslims of native Iberian origin , formed the majority of Muslims.

The Muladies had spoken in a Romance dialect of Latin called Mozarabic while increasingly adopting the Arabic language, which eventually evolved into the Andalusi Arabic in which Muslims, Jews, and Christians became monolingual in the last surviving Muslim state in the Iberian Peninsula, the Emirate of Granada Eventually, the Muladies, and later the Berber tribes, adopted an Arabic identity like the majority of subject people in Egypt , the Levant , Mesopotamia , and North Africa.

Muladies, together with other Muslims, comprised eighty percent of the population of al-Andalus by The Jewish population worked mainly as tax collectors, in trade , or as doctors or ambassadors. At the end of the 15th century there were about 50, Jews in Granada and roughly , in the whole of Islamic Iberia. Non-Muslims were given the status of ahl al-dhimma the people under protection , with adult men paying a " Jizya " tax, equal to one dinar per year with exemptions for the elderly and the disabled.

Those who were neither Christians nor Jews, such as pagans, were given the status of Majus. Jews constituted more than five percent of the population. Southern Iberia became an asylum for the oppressed Jews of other countries. Under the Almoravids and the Almohads there may have been intermittent persecution of Jews, [50] but sources are extremely scarce and do not give a clear picture, though the situation appears to have deteriorated after The Almohads , who had taken control of the Almoravids' Maghribi and Andalusi territories by , [56] far surpassed the Almoravides in fundamentalist outlook, and they treated the non-Muslims harshly.

Faced with the choice of either death or conversion, many Jews and Christians emigrated. Many ethnicities, religions, and races coexisted in al-Andalus, each contributing to its intellectual prosperity. Literacy in Islamic Iberia was far more widespread than in many other nations in the West at the time. Although there was a clear rivalry between the two powers, there was freedom to travel between the two caliphates, [ citation needed ] which helped spread new ideas and innovations over time.

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The Alhambra palace and fortress best reflects the culture and art of the last centuries of Moorish rule of Al-Andalus. Artists and intellectuals took refuge at Alhambra after the Reconquista began to roll back Muslim territory. The site integrates natural qualities with constructed structures and gardens, and is a testament to Moorish culture in Spain and to the skills of the Muslim artisans, craftsmen, and builders of their era.

The decoration within the palace comes from the last great period of Andalusian art in Granada, with little of the Byzantine influence of contemporary Abbasid architecture. Columns and muqarnas appear in several chambers, and the interiors of numerous palaces are decorated with arabesques and calligraphy. The historian Said al-Andalusi wrote that Caliph Abd-ar-Rahman III had collected libraries of books and granted patronage to scholars of medicine and "ancient sciences". Al-Mansur was a distinctly religious man and disapproved of the sciences of astronomy , logic , and especially of astrology , so much so that many books on these subjects, which had been preserved and collected at great expense by Al-Hakam II , were burned publicly.

With Al-Mansur's death in , interest in philosophy revived. Numerous scholars emerged, including Abu Uthman Ibn Fathun , whose masterwork was the philosophical treatise " Tree of Wisdom ". Maslamah Ibn Ahmad al-Majriti died was an outstanding scholar in astronomy and astrology; he was an intrepid traveller who journeyed all over the Islamic world and beyond and kept in touch with the Brethren of Purity.

He is said to have brought the 51 " Epistles of the Brethren of Purity " to al-Andalus and added the compendium to this work, although it is quite possible that it was added later by another scholar with the name al-Majriti.

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Another book attributed to al-Majriti is the Ghayat al-Hakim , "The Aim of the Sage", which explored a synthesis of Platonism with Hermetic philosophy. Its use of incantations led the book to be widely dismissed in later years, although the Sufi communities continued to study it. The al-Andalus philosopher Averroes — was the founder of the Averroism school of philosophy, and his works and commentaries influenced medieval thought in Western Europe [ citation needed ].

Another influential al-Andalus philosopher was Ibn Tufail. As Jewish thought in Babylonia declined, the tolerance of al-Andalus made it the new centre of Jewish intellectual endeavours. Poets and commentators like Judah Halevi — and Dunash ben Labrat — contributed to the cultural life of al-Andalus , but the area was even more important to the development of Jewish philosophy. A stream of Jewish philosophers, cross-fertilizing with Muslim philosophers see joint Jewish and Islamic philosophies , culminated with the widely celebrated Jewish thinker of the Middle Ages, Maimonides — , though he did not actually do any of his work in al-Andalus , his family having fled persecution by the Almohads when he was In the book Medieval Iberia: An Encyclopedia Daniel Eisenberg describes homosexuality as "a key symbolic issue throughout the Middle Ages in Iberia", stating that "in al-Andalus homosexual pleasures were much indulged in by the intellectual and political elite.

Evidence includes the behaviour of rulers, such as Abd al-Rahmn III, Al-Hakam II, Hisham II, and Al Mu'tamid, who openly kept male harems; the memoirs of Abdallah ibn Buluggin , last Zirid king of Granada, makes references to male prostitutes, who charged higher fees and had a higher class of clientele than did their female counter-parts: Both pederasty and love between adult males are found.

Although homosexual practices were never officially condoned, prohibitions against them were rarely enforced, and usually there was not even a pretense of doing so.

The Moors of Spain

Very little is known about the homosexual behaviour of women. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about the historical region. For the modern-day region, see Andalusia.