History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella: The Catholic - Vol. 1

History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella: The Catholic - Vol. 1

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History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella: The Catholic - Vol. 1

History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella: The Catholic - Vol. 1

Read FREE!

Excerpt

Early History and Constitution of Castile. -- Invasion of the Arabs. -- Slow Reconquest of the Country. -- Religious Enthusiasm of the Spaniards. -- Influence of their Minstrelsy. -- Their Chivalry. -- Castilian Towns. -- Cortes. -- Its Powers. -- Its Boldness. -- Wealth of the Cities. -- The Nobility. -- Their Privileges and Wealth. -- Knights. -- Clergy. -- Poverty of the Crown. -- Limited extent of the Prerogative.

FOR several hundred years after the great Saracen invasion in the beginning of the eighth century, Spain was broken up into a number of small, but independent states, divided in their interests, and often in deadly hostility with one another. It was inhabited by races, the most dissimilar in their origin, religion, and government, the least important of which has exerted a sensible influence on the character and institutions of its present inhabitants. At the close of the fifteenth century, these various races were blended into one great nation, under one common rule. Its territorial limits were widely extended by discovery and conquest. Its domestic institutions, and even its literature, were moulded into the form, which, to a considerable ex-

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