Blood and Faith: The Purging of Muslim Spain by Matthew Carr

By Matthew Carr

"In this primary accomplished appreciation in lots of many years of the Muslim expulsion from Spain, Blood and Faith meticulously recaptures the fateful self-mutilation of a society that will became Europe's first multicultural state and gives a grim lesson approximately spiritual and racial repression in our modern age of contested faiths."
--David Levering Lewis, writer of God's Crucible: Islam and the Making of Europe, 570-1215

Seldom does a centuries-old tale have such extraordinary modern resonance. In April 1609, King Philip III of Spain signed an edict denouncing the Muslim population of Spain as heretics, traitors, and apostates. Later that yr, the complete Muslim inhabitants of Spain was once given 3 days to go away Spanish territory, on hazard of loss of life.

In the brutal and tense exodus that undefined, whole households and groups have been obliged to desert houses and villages the place they'd lived for generations, leaving their estate within the palms in their Christian pals. In Aragon and Catalonia, Muslims have been escorted by way of govt commissioners who pressured them to pay every time they drank water from a river or took shelter within the coloration. for 5 years the expulsion endured to grind on, until eventually an anticipated 300,000 Muslims were faraway from Spanish territory, approximately five percentage of the entire inhabitants. through 1614 Spain had effectively carried out what was once then the most important act of ethnic detoxification in eu historical past, and Muslim Spain had successfully ceased to exist.

Blood and Faith is well known journalist Matthew Carr's riveting chronicle of this almost unknown episode, set opposed to the shiny historic backdrop of Muslim Spain. here's a awesome window onto a little-known interval in smooth Europe--a wealthy and intricate story of competing faiths and ideology, of cultural oppression, and of resistance opposed to overwhelming odds.

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Extra info for Blood and Faith: The Purging of Muslim Spain

Example text

Lea saw the removal of the Moriscos as a triumph of religious fanaticism and bigotry over the rational interests of the state, which sacrificed Spain’s material prosperity and intellectual development in pursuit of unity of the faith. Most historians agree on the brutality of the expulsion, regardless of whether they approved of its aims. The removal of the Moriscos is often described as a historical tragedy, and for the tens of thousands of men and women who lost their homes, their livelihoods, and in many cases their lives, their fate was indeed tragic.

Bolstered by reinforcements from North Africa the following spring, the Muslims rapidly extended their control over the rest of the peninsula. Within three years, the Christian presence south of the Pyrenees had been reduced to a small enclave in the inaccessible mountains of Asturias, and Visigothic Spain had effectively ceased to exist. The Muslims gave the name al-Andalus, the land of the Vandals, to the territories they occupied. To Iberian Christians, their conquerors became known as moros, Moors, from the Latin mauri, or maurusci, as the Romans had called the Berbers of North Africa.

The removal of the Moriscos is often described as a historical tragedy, and for the tens of thousands of men and women who lost their homes, their livelihoods, and in many cases their lives, their fate was indeed tragic. But the expulsion was also a monumental historical crime. Even from the distance of four hundred years, it is a crime that feels disturbingly modern. The history of the nation-state is littered with episodes in which unwanted or surplus populations have been driven from their lands and homes or physically eliminated in order to establish religiously, ethnically, or racially homogeneous communities within a single national territory.

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