General Information

Kingdom of Spain

National name: Reino de España

Land area: 192,819 sq mi (499,401 sq km); total area: 194,896 sq mi (504,782 sq km)1

Population (2007 est.): 40,448,191

Capital and largest city (2003 est.): Madrid, 5,130,000 (metro. area), 3,169,400 (city proper)

Other large cities: Barcelona, 1,528,800; Valencia, 741,100; Seville, 679,100

Monetary unit: Euro (formerly peseta)

Languages: Castilian Spanish 74% (official nationwide); Catalan 17%, Galician 7%, Basque 2% (each official regionally)

Ethnicity/race: composite of Mediterranean and Nordic types

Religions: Roman Catholic 94%, other 6%

Literacy rate: 98% (2003 est.)

Economic summary: GDP/PPP (2007est.): $1.352 trillion; per capita $30,100. Real growth rate: 3.8%. Inflation: 2.8%.

Spain occupies 85% of the Iberian Peninsula, which it shares with Portugal, in southwest Europe. Africa is less than 10 mi (16 km) south at the Strait of Gibraltar. A broad central plateau slopes to the south and east, crossed by a series of mountain ranges and river valleys. Principal rivers are the Ebro in the northeast, the Tajo in the central region, and the Guadalquivir in the south. Off Spain's east coast in the Mediterranean are the Balearic Islands (1,936 sq mi; 5,014 sq km), the largest of which is Majorca. Sixty mi (97 km) west of Africa are the Canary Islands (2,808 sq mi; 7,273 sq km).

Spain, originally inhabited by Celts, Iberians, and Basques, became a part of the Roman Empire in 206 B.C., when it was conquered by Scipio Africanus. In A.D. 412, the barbarian Visigothic leader Ataulf crossed the Pyrenees and ruled Spain, first in the name of the Roman emperor and then independently. In 711, the Muslims under Tariq entered Spain from Africa and within a few years completed the subjugation of the country. In 732, the Franks, led by Charles Martel, defeated the Muslims near Poitiers, thus preventing the further expansion of Islam in southern Europe. Internal dissension of Spanish Islam invited a steady Christian conquest from the north.

Aragon and Castile were the most important Spanish states from the 12th to the 15th century, consolidated by the marriage of Ferdinand II and Isabella I in 1469. In 1478, they established the Inquisition, to root out heresy and uncover Jews and Muslims who had not sincerely converted to Christianity. Torquemada, the most notorious of the grand inquisitors, epitomized the Inquisition's harshness and cruelty. The last Muslim stronghold, Granada, was captured in 1492. Roman Catholicism was established as the official state religion and most Jews (1492) and Muslims (1502) were expelled. In the era of exploration, discovery, and colonization, Spain amassed tremendous wealth and a vast colonial empire through the conquest of Mexico by Cortés (1519–1521) and Peru by Pizarro (1532–1533). The Spanish Hapsburg monarchy became for a time the most powerful in the world. In 1588, Philip II sent his invincible Armada to invade England, but its destruction cost Spain its supremacy on the seas and paved the way for England's colonization of America. Spain then sank rapidly to the status of a second-rate power under the rule of weak Hapsburg kings, and it never again played a major role in European politics. The War of the Spanish Succession (1701–1714) resulted in Spain's loss of Belgium, Luxembourg, Milan, Sardinia, and Naples. Its colonial empire in the Americas and the Philippines vanished in wars and revolutions during the 18th and 19th centuries.

In World War I, Spain maintained a position of neutrality. In 1923, Gen. Miguel Primo de Rivera became dictator. In 1930, King Alfonso XIII revoked the dictatorship, but a strong antimonarchist and republican movement led to his leaving Spain in 1931. The new constitution declared Spain a workers' republic, broke up the large estates, separated church and state, and secularized the schools. The elections held in 1936 returned a strong Popular Front majority, with Manuel Azaña as president.

On July 18, 1936, a conservative army officer in Morocco, Francisco Franco Bahamonde, led a mutiny against the government. The civil war that followed lasted three years and cost the lives of nearly a million people. Franco was aided by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, while Soviet Russia helped the Loyalist side. Several hundred leftist Americans served in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade on the side of the republic. The war ended when Franco took Madrid on March 28, 1939. Franco became head of the state, national chief of the Falange Party (the governing party), and prime minister and caudillo (leader).

In a referendum in 1947, the Spanish people approved a Franco-drafted succession law declaring Spain a monarchy again. Franco, however, continued as chief of state. In 1969, Franco and the Cortes (“states”) designated Prince Juan Carlos Alfonso Victor María de Borbón (who married Princess Sophia of Greece in 1962) to become king of Spain when the provisional government headed by Franco came to an end. Franco died on Nov. 20, 1975, and Juan Carlos was proclaimed king on Nov. 22.

Under pressure from Catalonian and Basque nationalists, Prime Minister Adolfo Suárez granted home rule to these regions in 1979. Basque separatists committed hundreds of terrorist bombings and kidnappings. With the overwhelming election of Prime Minister Felipe González Márquez and his Spanish Socialist Workers Party in the Oct. 20, 1982, parliamentary elections, the Franco past was finally buried. Spain entered NATO in 1982. Spain, along with Portugal, joined the European Economic Community, now the European Union, in 1986.

Islamic History and Muslims

Islam in Spain has had a fundamental presence in the culture and history of the nation. The religion was dominant in southern Spain from 711 until 1492 under the rule of the Arabs and Moors of al-Andalus. For key historical dates, see Timeline of the Muslim presence in the Iberian peninsula. As of 2007, an estimated over 1 million Muslims are living in Spain.

Hispania was the Latin name given to the whole Iberian peninsula (covering the territories of present day Spain and Portugal), and after the fall of the Western Roman Empire (476 AD) the Teutonic tribe of Visigoths ended up ruling the whole peninsula until the Islamic conquest (during that time they pushed another Teutonic tribe out -- the Vandals -- and conquered another one -- the Suevi). It is frequently stated in historical sources that Spain was one of the former Roman provinces where the Latin language and culture grew deep roots. After the fall of the Empire the Visigoths continued the tradition by becoming probably the most Romanized of all Teutonic tribes.

On April 30th of 711, Berber leader Tariq ibn-Ziyad landed at Gibraltar and by the end of the campaign most of the Iberian Peninsula (except for small areas in the north-west such as Asturias and the Basque territory) were brought under Islamic rule. This campaign's turning point was the battle of Guadalete, where the last Visigothic king Roderick was defeated and killed on the battlefield. After this eight year campaign, Muslim forces attempted to move north-east across the Pyrenees Mountains toward France, but were defeated by the Frankish Catholic Charles Martel at the Battle of Tours in 732.

It is commonly held that the relative ease that the Arab/Berber armies conquered the Iberian peninsula with was due to the centralized nature of government under the rule of the Visigoths. After the defeat of Roderick, the Visigoth dominion over the Iberian peninsula folded and fell apart from the Northern coast of Spain, and the province of Septimania (an area of France going from the Pyrenees to Provence), all areas previously under the rule of the Visigoths were under Islamic rule.

Several historical sources state that the Islamic caliphate had not actually targeted Spain for conquest, but that political divisions within the Visigothic kingdom created an opportunity that Tariq and his army exploited successfully. For example, King Roderick was not considered a legitimate ruler by all the inhabitants of the Kingdom, and some Visigothic nobles actually aided the Islamic conquest. One name frequently mentioned is Count Julian of Ceuta in North Africa (this version calls him a Gothic noble), who according to some stories invited Tariq to invade because his daughter had been raped by King Roderick. Other sources instead consider Count Julian to be the last representative of the Byzantine Empire in North Africa.

Islamic rule in the Iberian peninsula lasted for varying periods ranging from only 28 years in the extreme northwest (Galicia) to 781 years in the area surrounding the city of Granada in the southeast.

Islamic rule

The majority of the Army as well as commander Tariq himself were not Arab but actually Islamic Berbers, and in time Islamic migrants from places as diverse as North Africa to Yemen and Syria would come to live in the Iberian peninsula. The Islamic rulers called the Iberian peninsula "Al-Andalus," which some say means "Paradise." That was the root for the name of the present-day region of Andalucia, the southernmost region of Spain and Portugal.

For a time, Spain (including at this time Portugal) was one of the great Muslim civilizations, reaching its summit with the Umayyad Caliphate in the 10th century. Muslim Spain had the following chronological phases:

The Emirate directly dependent on the Caliph in Damascus (711-756)
The Independent Emirate (756-929)
The Caliphate of Cordoba (929-1031)
The first Taifas (1031-c.1091)
The Almoravid rule (c.1091-c.1145)
The second Taifas (c.1145-c.1151)
The Almohad rule (c.1031–1212)
The Kingdom of Granada (1212–1492)
The late Alpujarras revolt (1568–1571), with two monarchs appointed successively by the Morisco rebels
(Note: the dates when the different taifa kingdoms were annexed by Almoravids and Almohads vary)

The status of Christians and Jews who lived in Spain during the period of Islamic rule has been a subject of controversy because of present-day attempts to judge this through modern eyes. Islamic religious doctrine from the onset clearly state that other monotheistic faiths had to be tolerated. Even though some Islamic rulers did not always follow the dictates of their own religion, there is plenty of evidence to prove that overall the majority in the Iberian peninsula did so, the strongest is the persistence of large Jewish and Christian communities throughout the era of Islamic rule.

Granted, the tolerance included restrictions on building new Churches and Synagogues, and some discrimination regarding giving evidence against Muslims in judicial proceedings. In addition, the Christian and Jewish population had to pay a special tax (Muslims meanwhile had to pay the Zakat, which is a compulsory on all Muslims), but in exchange non-Muslim males were not subject to military service. There was a brief period of Christian persecution in the 8th century. Regardless, compared to the treatment of minorities in contemporary European kingdoms during that time period, the Muslims were generally much more tolerant. It was only by the end of the fourth century after Tariq's conquest that a majority of the population practiced Islam (including descendants of Visigoths and Romans).

Present day cultural survivals of Islamic influence in Spain and Portugal include expressions such as Spanish "ojalá" and Portuguese "oxalá", meaning "may God will it," which is a close adaptation from an Arabic equivalent "inshallah" evoking Allah.


After the disgregation of the Caliphate, Islamic control of Spain was gradually eroded by the Spanish Reconquista. The Reconquista (Reconquest) was the process by which the Catholic Kingdoms of northern Spain eventually managed to succeed in defeating and conquering the southern Muslim states of the Iberian Peninsula. The first major city to fall to Catholic powers was Toledo in 1085, what prompted the intervention of Almoravids. After the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa in 1212, most of Al-Andalus fell under control of the Catholic kingdoms, the only exception being the Kingdom of Granada.

It was not until 1492 that Granada, the last Muslim city, fell to the Catholics at the hands of Queen Isabel of Castile and her husband Ferdinand of Aragon. The conquest was accompanied by the Treaty of Granada, allowing the Spanish crown's new Muslim subjects a large measure of religious toleration. They were also allowed the continuing use of their own language, schools, laws and customs. But the interpretation of the royal edict was largely left to the local Catholic authorities. Hernando de Talavera, the first archbishop of Granada after its fall, took a fairly tolerant view. This changed when he was replaced by Cardinal Cisneros, who immediately organised a drive for mass conversions and burned all texts in Arabic.

Outraged by this breach of faith, in 1499 the Mudejar rose in the First Rebellion of Alpujarras, which only had the effect of giving Ferdinand and Isabella the excuse to revoke the promise of toleration. That same year the Muslim leaders of Granada were ordered to hand over almost all of the remaining books in Arabic, most of which were burned. Beginning in Valencia in 1502, Muslims were offered the choice of baptism or exile. The majority decided to accept the former, becoming 'New Catholics', of very great interest to the newly-established Spanish Inquisition, authorised by Pope Sixtus IV in 1478.

The Converts, though outwardly Catholic, continued to adhere to their old beliefs in private, a conduct allowed for by some Islamic authorities when the faithful are under duress or threat of life, a practice known as taqiyyah or precaution. Responding to a plea from his co-religionists in Spain, in 1504 the Grand Mufti of Oran issued a decree saying that Muslims may drink wine, eat pork and other forbidden things, if they were under compulsion. There were good reasons for this; for abstinence from wine or pork could, and did, cause people to be denounced to the Inquisition. But no matter how closely they observed all of the correct forms, the Morisco or Little Moors, a term of disparagement, were little better than second-class citizens, tainted, it might be said, by blood rather than by actions.

Despite all of these pressures some people continued to observe Moorish forms, and practice as Muslims, well into the sixteenth century. In 1567 Philip II finally made the use of Arabic illegal, forbidding the Islamic religion, dress and customs, a step which led to the Second Rebellion of Alpujarras. This was suppressed with considerable brutality. In one incident, troops commanded by Don John of Austria destroyed the town of Galera east of Granada, after slaughtering the entire population. The Moriscos of Granada were rounded up and dispersed across Spain. Edicts of expulsion were finally issued by Philip III in 1609, against people who were now perceived to be a threat to the "purity" of the Spanish race.

Islam in modern Spain

Spain’s interaction with the Muslim world extends back to the 9th century and Islamic expansion into Europe. Most Muslims were expelled in 1492, although there is strong evidence that some did remain behind and publicly proclaimed Catholicism but privately practiced Islam. This tendency faded over time, and the Muslim presence in Spain disappeared until the 1960s.

Initially, many Moroccans entered the tourist industry on the Mediterranean coast. They were primarily undocumented and transient, often attempting to get into France. The profile of these Moroccans began to shift, and they began to come from the Spanish protectorate area in northern Morocco, and settle in Catalonia.

As countries further north of Spain began controlling immigration more tightly, many immigrants began settling in Spain so that by the late 1970s it is estimated there were 100,000 Moroccans in Barcelona.

Since the 1980s most of the growth of the Muslim population has been due to family reunification. Current estimates put the Muslim population of Spain at 500,000, predominantly Moroccan.

Other points of origin include Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq whose citizens came as students and entrepreneurs. By 1977 these numbers expanded to include Palestinian refugees, and in 1979 Iranian refugees. While socially important, demographically their impact is minimal.

An important group of Muslims in the country is composed not of migrants, but of converts. In the 1970s there seems to have been a marked increase in the number of Spaniards accepting Islam. Various theories have been put forward as to why this might be the case, including the need to recover an authentic Spanish identity by look back at the period of Muslim rule. The result has been that in the mid-1990s converts had founded over half the Muslim groups. Current estimates place their numbers at 6,000 individuals.

Mosque of Madrid, inaugurated in 1992.In recent decades, immigration has resulted in a resurgence in the presence of Islam, with over one million Muslims currently residing in Spain, of which the majority are Moroccans and Spaniards represented by the Islamic Commission of Spain.

Muslims are represented by the Islamic Commission of Spain (CIE), formed in an agreement with the Spanish state in 1992. It is composed of two federations: the FEERI, the Federation of Spanish Islamic Entities, and the UCIDE, the Union of Islamic Communities in Spain. These organizations are domestic and long-standing. All is not perfect, though. There have been ongoing problems with the implementation of the agreement, both because of difficulties with the Muslim leadership and delays by the government.

In 1990, there were two purpose built mosques. Presently, there are approximately 12, with several hundred other premises being used as mosques. A mosque was opened in Granada in 2003 to much fanfare as a return of Muslims to an ancestral home. There have been some complaints about bureaucratic barriers to mosque construction, especially in centers of cities.

There has been little political controversy over the hijab in Spain. Research by Gema Martin-Muñoz has shown that the hijab becomes an important symbol of identity for many women. It is common among Spanish converts, and is sometimes taken up by immigrants who may not have worn it in their home countries.

Spain’s recent decision to legalize gay marriage prompted calls from some Muslims for the legalization of polygamy. It does not appear that this proposal is likely to be instated.

The 1992 cooperation agreement permits halal slaughter and all reports suggest that the provisions have been implemented.

The mosque in Granada opened in July 2003 and has become a major issue for debate. The project started over 20 years ago and faced several legal challenges. In addition, there were several acts of vandalism against the construction site, encouraging the “Moors” to go home. Islamophobia and xenophobia colored the debate on mosque construction, and while the immediate concern has died down, the concern of successful inter-religious dialogue remains.

Other recent concerns have focused on using Cordoba’s Mezquita-Cathedral as a mosque once more and the celebration of La Toma, the capture, commemorating a Spanish defeat of Muslims. (


      Mosque of Madrid, 1992. Centro Cultural Islámico   Mezquita de Madrid

Muslims congregate in December 2007 in front of a converted garage in Lleida, Spain, that serves as a mosque. (Stefano Buonamici for the International Herald Tribune) (  )


Chebi Mosque, built by Marino Nuvolari is an impressive build modeled on the Mezquita mosque in Spain and it’s a striking resemblance.                           Mezquita de Córdoba, Spain, Córdoba. 784. “Great Mosque of Cordoba”, now a Catholic cathedral                    Mezquita de Bab al-Mardum, Toledo, 999

Basharat Mosque

The Basharat-Moschee (span.: Mezquita Basharat; the name means “good news”) was inaugurated on September 10, 1982 in Pedro Abad (province Córdoba) from Mirza Tahir Ahmad, spiritual head of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. The mosque is the center of Ahmadiyya-Movement in Spain. The foundation stone was laid by the 3th Khalifat-ul Masih Mirza Nasir Ahmad in Oktober, 9th 1980. It is the first purpose-built mosque in Spain in 750 years and M. Karam Ilahi Zafar first Islam missionary. The annual gathering, Jalsa Salana, of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Spain is celebrated in Pedro Abad.

Great Mosque of Cordoba

Muslim architecture of the Mezquita.

The Mezquita (Spanish for "mosque") of Cordoba is a Roman Catholic cathedral and former mosque situated in the Andalusian city of Córdoba, Spain. Under the rule of Islam, it was built as the second-largest mosque in the world, and is perhaps the most accomplished monument of the Umayyad dynasty of Cordoba. After the Spanish Reconquista, it was transformed into a church, and some of the Islamic columns and arches were replaced by a basilica in early Baroque style. Today it houses the main church of the diocese of Cordoba in Spain.

The construction of the Mezquita started in approximately 600 A.D. as a Christian Visigothic church. Later, the Mezquita (originally the "Aljama Mosque") was reworked for over two centuries to refashion it as a mosque, starting in 784 A.D. under the supervision of the first Muslim Emir Abd ar-Rahman I, who used it as an adjunct to his palace and named it to honor his wife. The land was bought by the Emir from the previous owners. It is believed that the site included the Visigothic cathedral of St. Vincent. When the forces of Tariq ibn-Ziyad first occupied Córdoba in 711, the Christian cathedral was suppressed.

Several explanations have been proposed to explain the mosque's unorthodox orientation. Some have suggested the mihrab faces south because the foundations of the mosque are borrowed from the old Roman and Visigoth constructions. Others contend that Abd ar-Rahman oriented the mihrab southward as if he were still in the Ummayyad capital of Damascus and not in exile.

The mosque underwent numerous subsequent changes: Abd ar-Rahman III ordered a new minaret, while Al-Hakam II, in 961, enlarged the plan of the building and enriched the mihrab. The last of the reforms was carried out by Al-Mansur Ibn Abi Aamir in 987.

It was the most magnificent of the more than 1,000 mosques in the city and was at one time the second largest mosque in the Muslim world. It was connected to the Caliph's palace by a raised walk-way, mosques within the palaces being the tradition for the islamic rulers of all times.

The city in which it was built was subject to frequent invasion and each conquering wave added their own mark to the architecture. The building is most notable for its giant arches, with over 1,000 columns of jasper, onyx, marble, and granite. These were made from pieces of the Roman temple which had occupied the site previously, as well as other destroyed Roman buildings. The double arches, pictured above, were a new introduction to architecture, and helped support the tremendous weight of the higher ceilings. The double arches consist of a lower horseshoe arch and an upper semi-circular arch. The Mezquita also features richly gilded prayer niches. A centrally located honey-combed dome has beautiful blue tiles decorated with stars. The mihrab is a masterpiece of architectural art, with geometric and flowing designs of plants. The Mezquita reached its current dimensions in 987 A.D. with the completion of the outer naves and orange tree courtyard.

In 1236, Cordoba was recaptured from the Muslim army by King Ferdinand III of Castile and the mosque was reconsecrated a Christian church. Alfonso X oversaw the construction of the Villaviciosa Chapel and the Royal Chapel within the structure of the mosque. The kings who followed added further Christian features: Enrique II rebuilt the chapel in the 14th century.

The most significant alteration was the construction of a Renaissance cathedral nave in the middle of the structure. It was constructed by permission of Carlos V, king of united Spain. Its reversion to a Christian church (officially the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin) may have helped to preserve it when the Spanish Inquisition was most active.

Artisans and architects continued to add to the existing structure until the late 18th century.
The Mezquita (Spanish for "mosque") of Cordoba is a Roman Catholic cathedral and former mosque situated in the Andalusian city of Córdoba, Spain. Under the rule of Islam, it was built as the second-largest mosque in the world, and is perhaps the most accomplished monument of the Umayyad dynasty of Cordoba. After the Spanish Reconquista, it was transformed into a church, and some of the Islamic columns and arches were replaced by a basilica in early Baroque style. Today it houses the main church of the diocese of Cordoba in Spain.

The construction of the Mezquita started in approximately 600 A.D. as a Christian Visigothic church. Later, the Mezquita (originally the "Aljama Mosque") was reworked for over two centuries to refashion it as a mosque, starting in 784 A.D. under the supervision of the first Muslim Emir Abd ar-Rahman I, who used it as an adjunct to his palace and named it to honor his wife. The land was bought by the Emir from the previous owners. It is believed that the site included the Visigothic cathedral of St. Vincent. When the forces of Tariq ibn-Ziyad first occupied Córdoba in 711, the Christian cathedral was suppressed.

Several explanations have been proposed to explain the mosque's unorthodox orientation. Some have suggested the mihrab faces south because the foundations of the mosque are borrowed from the old Roman and Visigoth constructions. Others contend that Abd ar-Rahman oriented the mihrab southward as if he were still in the Ummayyad capital of Damascus and not in exile.

The mosque underwent numerous subsequent changes: Abd ar-Rahman III ordered a new minaret, while Al-Hakam II, in 961, enlarged the plan of the building and enriched the mihrab. The last of the reforms was carried out by Al-Mansur Ibn Abi Aamir in 987.

It was the most magnificent of the more than 1,000 mosques in the city and was at one time the second largest mosque in the Muslim world. It was connected to the Caliph's palace by a raised walk-way, mosques within the palaces being the tradition for the islamic rulers of all times.

The city in which it was built was subject to frequent invasion and each conquering wave added their own mark to the architecture. The building is most notable for its giant arches, with over 1,000 columns of jasper, onyx, marble, and granite. These were made from pieces of the Roman temple which had occupied the site previously, as well as other destroyed Roman buildings. The double arches, pictured above, were a new introduction to architecture, and helped support the tremendous weight of the higher ceilings. The double arches consist of a lower horseshoe arch and an upper semi-circular arch. The Mezquita also features richly gilded prayer niches. A centrally located honey-combed dome has beautiful blue tiles decorated with stars. The mihrab is a masterpiece of architectural art, with geometric and flowing designs of plants. The Mezquita reached its current dimensions in 987 A.D. with the completion of the outer naves and orange tree courtyard.

In 1236, Cordoba was recaptured from the Muslim army by King Ferdinand III of Castile and the mosque was reconsecrated a Christian church. Alfonso X oversaw the construction of the Villaviciosa Chapel and the Royal Chapel within the structure of the mosque. The kings who followed added further Christian features: Enrique II rebuilt the chapel in the 14th century.

The most significant alteration was the construction of a Renaissance cathedral nave in the middle of the structure. It was constructed by permission of Carlos V, king of united Spain. Its reversion to a Christian church (officially the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin) may have helped to preserve it when the Spanish Inquisition was most active.

Artisans and architects continued to add to the existing structure until the late 18th century.

Patio de los Naranjos, inside the Mezquita.

Mosque of Cristo de la Luz

Mosque of Cristo de la Luz

Christ of the Light or Cristo de la Luz is the only remaining mosque in Toledo of the ten which existed in the city during Moorish times. It was then known as Bab-al-Mardum. It is located near the Puerta del Sol, in an area of the city once called Medina where wealthy Muslims used to live.

As of July 2008, the mosque is under extensive renovation, but partially open for tourists. The mosque is a small building measuring about 8 x 8m. Four columns capped with Visigothic capitals divide the interior into nine compartments. Above these are nine vaults, each with a distinctive design.

Behind this square section, a Mudéjar semi-circular apse contains frescoes of Pantocrator and the Tetramorphs.An inscription written with brick in Kufic script on the south-west facade reveals the details of the mosque's foundation:

Bismala (in the name of Allah). Ahmad ibn Hadidi had this mosque erected using his own money requesting a reward in paradise for it from Allah. It was completed with the aid of Allah under the direction of Musa ibn Alí, architect and Sa'ada, and concluded in Muharraq in the year 390. (13th December 999 – 11 January 1000 AD)
According to legend, when King Alfonso VI entered Toledo in conquest in 1085, his horse knelt before the door of the mosque. A shaft of light guided the king to a figurine of the crucified Christ which had been hidden for centuries. He left his shield there with the inscription, "This is the shield which the King Alfonso VI left in this chapel when he conquered Toledo, and the first mass was held here".

In 1186, Alfonso VIII gave the building to the Knights of the Order of St John, who established it as the Chapel of the Holy Cross (Ermita de la Santa Cruz). They extended it by adding the apse.



Al-Andalus (Arabic: الأندلس‎) was the Arabic name given to those parts of the Iberian Peninsula governed by Muslims, or Moors, at various times in the period between 711 and 1492. As a political domain or domains, it was successively a province of the Umayyad Caliphate initiated successfully by the Caliph Al-Walid I (711-750), the Emirate of Córdoba (c. 750-929), the Caliphate of Córdoba (929-1031), the Caliphate of Córdoba's taifa (successor) kingdoms.

In succeeding centuries, al-Andalus became a province of the Berber dynasties of the Almoravids and Almohads, subsequently fragmenting into a number of minor states, most notably the Emirate of Granada. For large parts of its history, particularly under the Caliphate of Córdoba, Andalus was a beacon of learning and the city of Córdoba became one of the leading cultural and economic centers in both the Mediterranean basin and the Islamic world.

For much of its history, Al-Andalus existed in conflict with Christian kingdoms to the north. In 1085 Alfonso VI of Castile captured Toledo, precipitating a gradual decline until, by 1236, with the fall of Córdoba, the Kingdom of Granada remained the only Muslim ruled territory in what is now Spain. The Portuguese Reconquista culminated in 1249 with the conquest of the Algarve by Afonso III. In 1238, Granada officially became a tributary state to the Kingdom of Castile, then ruled by Ferdinand III. On January 2, 1492, Muhammad XII of Granada surrendered complete control of Granada to Ferdinand and Isabella, Los Reyes Católicos ("The Catholic Monarchs").

Etymology of al-Andalus

The etymology of the word "al-Andalus" is disputed. Furthermore, the extent of Iberian territory encompassed by the name may have changed over centuries. As a designation for Iberia or its southern portion, the name is first attested by inscriptions on coins minted by the new Muslim government in Iberia circa 715 (the uncertainty in the year is due to the fact that the coins were bilingual in Latin and Arabic and the two inscriptions differ as to the year of minting).
At least three specific etymologies have been proposed in Western scholarship, all presuming that the name arose after the Roman period in the Iberian Peninsula's history. Their originators or defenders have been historians. Recently, linguistics expertise has been brought to bear on the issue. Arguments from toponymy (the study of place names), history, and language structure demonstrate the lack of substance in all preceding proposals, and evidence has been presented that the name predates the Roman occupation rather than postdates it.

A major objection to all earlier proposals is that the very name Andaluz (the equivalent of Andalus in Spanish spelling) exists in several places in mountainous areas of Castile. Furthermore, the fragment and- is common in Spanish place names, and the fragment -luz also occurs several times across Spain.

Older proposals

In Western scholarly tradition, right up to the present moment, the name has been considered by most commentators to come from "Vandal", the name of the Germanic tribe that colonized parts of Iberia from 407 to 429. However, on the one hand there is in fact no historical (i.e., documentary) attestation of this, and on the other hand there are numerous toponymic, linguistic, and historical reasons why it is untenable. This proposal is sometimes associated with the 19th century historian, Dozy; but it predates him and he recognized certain of its shortcomings. Although he accepted that "al-Andalus" derived from "Vandal", he believed that geographically it referred only to the harbor from which the Vandals departed Iberia for Africa -- the location of which harbor was unknown.

Another proposal is that "Andalus" is an Arabic language version of the name "Atlantis". This idea has recently been defended by the Spanish historian, Vallvé, but purely on the grounds that it is allegedly plausible phonetically and would explain several toponymic facts -- no historical evidence offered. In Modern Standard Arabic, the name for "Atlantis" is aţlānţis, and this is the title of the entry for Atlantis in the Arabic language Wikipedia.

Vallvé writes:

Arabic texts offering the first mentions of the island of al-Andalus and the sea of al-Andalus become extraordinarily clear if we substitute this expressions with "Atlántida" or "Atlantic". The same can be said with reference to Hercules and the Amazons whose island, according to Arabic commentaries of these Greek and Latin legends, was located in jauf al-Andalus—that is, to the north or interior of the Atlantic Ocean.

The "Island of al-Andalus" is mentioned in an anonymous Arabic chronicle of the conquest of Iberia composed two to three centuries after the fact. It is identified as the location of the landfall of the advance guard of the Moorish invasion of Iberia. The chronicle also says that "Island of al-Andalus" was subsequently renamed "Island of Tarifa". The preliminary invasion force of a few hundred, led by the Berber chief, Tarif abu Zura, seized the first bit of land that is encountered after crossing the Strait of Gibraltar in 710. The main invasion force led by Tariq ibn Ziyad followed them a year later. The landfall, now known in Spain as either Punta Marroquí or Punta de Tarifa, is in fact the southern tip of an islet, presently known as Isla de Tarifa or Isla de las Palomas, just offshore of the Iberian mainland.

This testimony of the Arab chronicle, the modern name "Isla de Tarifa", and the above mentioned toponymic evidence that "Andaluz" is a name of pre-Roman origin taken together lead to the supposition that the "Island of Andalus" is the present day Isla de Tarifa, which lies just offshore from the modern day Spanish city of Tarifa. The extension of the scope of the designation "Al-Andalus" from a single islet to all of Iberia has several historical precedents.

In the 1980s, the historian Halm, also rejecting the "Vandal" proposal, originated an innovative alternative. Halm took as his points of departure ancient reports that Germanic tribes in general were reported to have distributed conquered lands by having members draw lots, and that Iberia during the period of Visigothic rule was sometimes known to outsiders by a Latin name, Gothica Sors, whose meaning is 'lot Gothland'. Halm thereupon speculated that the Visigoths themselves might have called their new lands "lot lands" and done so in their own language. However, the Gothic language version of the term Gothica Sors is not attested. Halm claimed to have been able to reconstruct it, proposing that it was *landahlauts (the asterisk is the standard symbol among linguists for a linguistic form that is merely proposed, not attested). Halm then suggested that the hypothetical Gothic language term gave rise to both the attested Latin term, Gothica Sors (by translation of the meaning), and the Arab name, Al-Andalus (by phonetic imitation). However, Halm did not offer evidence (historical or linguistic) that any of the language developments in his argument had in fact occurred.


 Conquest and early years

The Age of the Caliphs

     Prophet Muhammad, 622-632

     Rashidun Caliphate, 632-661

     Umayyad Caliphate, 661-750

The invaders in Iberia in 711 constituted mainly Berbers of North Africa. Some were Arabs. The Muslims of the Iberian Peninsula are commonly known as the Moors (in Spanish Moros), from an ancient Roman ethnonym, Mauri. The Christians of the Iberian Peninsula began to use this term exclusively for Muslims when the Muslims lost administrative control of northern parts of Spain and Portugal. Other words such as "Moriscos" and "Mudéjar" came into use in Spain in the mid-thirteenth century

Under the orders of the Great Umayyad Caliph Al-Walid I, Tariq ibn-Ziyad led a small force that landed at Gibraltar on April 30, 711. After a decisive victory at the Battle of Guadalete on July 19, 711, Tariq ibn-Ziyad brought most of the Iberian Peninsula under Muslim occupation in a seven-year campaign. They crossed the Pyrenees and occupied parts of southern France, but were eventually defeated by the Frank Charles Martel at the Battle of Poitiers in 732. The Iberian peninsula, except for the Kingdom of Asturias, became part of the expanding Umayyad empire, under the name of al-Andalus. The earliest attestation of this Arab name is a dinar coin, preserved in the Archaeological Museum in Madrid, dating from five years after the conquest (716). The coin bears the word "al-Andalus" in Arabic script on one side and the Iberian Latin "Span" on the obverse.
At first, al-Andalus was ruled by governors appointed by the Caliph, most ruling for periods of under three years. However, from 740, a series of civil wars between various Muslim groups in Iberia resulted in the breakdown of Caliphal control, with Yūsuf al-Fihri, who emerged as the main winner, effectively becoming an independent ruler.

The Emirate and Caliphate of Córdoba

The Caliphate of Cordoba c. 1000 at the apogee of Al-Mansur.

In 750, the Abbasids overthrew the Umayyads for control of the great Arab empire. But in 756, the exiled Umayyad prince Abd-ar-Rahman I (later titled Al-Dākhil) ousted Yūsuf al-Fihri to establish himself as the Emir of Córdoba. He refused to submit to the Abbasid caliph, as Abbasid forces had killed most of his family. Over a thirty year reign, he established a tenuous rule over much of al-Andalus, overcoming partisans of both the al-Fihri family and of the Abbasid caliph.

For the next century and a half, his descendants continued as emirs of Córdoba, with nominal control over the rest of al-Andalus and sometimes even parts of western North Africa, but with real control, particularly over the marches along the Christian border, vacillating depending on the competence of the individual emir. Indeed, the power of emir Abdallah ibn Muhammad (circa 900) did not extend beyond Córdoba itself. But his grandson Abd-al-Rahman III, who succeeded him in 912, not only rapidly restored Umayyad power throughout al-Andalus but extended it into western North Africa as well. In 929 he proclaimed himself Caliph, elevating the emirate to a position competing in prestige not only with the Abbasid caliph in Baghdad but also the Shi'ite caliph in Tunis—with whom he was competing for control of North Africa.

The period of the Caliphate is seen by Muslim writers as the golden age of al-Andalus. Crops produced using irrigation, along with food imported from the Middle East, provided the area around Córdoba and some other Andalusī cities with an agricultural economic sector by far the most advanced in Europe. Among European cities, Córdoba under the Caliphate, with a population of perhaps 500,000, eventually overtook Constantinople as the largest and most prosperous city in Europe. Within the Islamic world, Córdoba was one of the leading cultural centres. 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 after the reconquista of Toledo in 1085 . The most noted of these was Michael Scot (c. 1175 to c. 1235), who took the works of Ibn Rushd ("Averroes") and Ibn Sina ("Avicenna") to Italy. This transmission was to have a significant impact on the formation of the European Renaissance.

The First Taifa Period

The Córdoba Caliphate effectively collapsed during a ruinous civil war between 1009 and 1013, although it was not finally abolished until 1031. Al-Andalus then broke up into a number of mostly independent states called taifas. These were generally too weak to defend themselves against repeated raids and demands for tribute from the Christian states to the north and west, which were known to the muslims as "the Galician nations",  and which had spread from their initial strongholds in Galicia, Asturias, Cantabria, the Basque country and the Carolingian Marca Hispanica to become the Kingdoms of Navarre, León, Portugal, Castile and Aragon and the County of Barcelona. Eventually raids turned into conquests, and in response the taifa kings were forced to request help from the Almoravids, Islamic rulers of the Maghreb. Their desperate maneuver would eventually fall to their disadvantage, however, as the Moravids they had summoned from the south went on to conquer many of the taifa kingdoms.

Almoravids, Almohads and Marinids

                                              The Caliphate broke up into many taifa states in 1031. (The northern areas shown here in white, red, yellow & dark blue were Christian)

In 1086 the Almoravid ruler of Morocco Yusuf ibn Tashfin was invited by the Muslim princes in Iberia to defend them against Alfonso VI, King of Castile and León. In that year, Yusuf ibn Tashfin crossed the straits to Algeciras and inflicted a severe defeat on the Christians at the az-Zallaqah. By 1094, Yusuf ibn Tashfin had removed all Muslim princes in Iberia and annexed their states, except for the one at Zaragoza. He regained Valencia from the Christians.

The Almoravids were succeeded in the 12th century by the Almohads, another Berber dynasty, after the victory of Abu Yusuf Ya'qub al-Mansur over the Castilian Alfonso VIII at the Battle of Alarcos. In 1212 a coalition of Christian kings under the leadership of the Castilian Alfonso VIII defeated the Almohads at the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa. The Almohads continued to rule Al Andalus for another decade, but with much reduced power and prestige; and the civil wars following the death of Abu Ya'qub Yusuf II rapidly led to the re-establishment of taifas. The taifas, newly independent but now weakened, were quickly conquered by Portugal, Castile and Aragon. After the fall of Murcia (1243) and the Algarve (1249), only the Kingdom of Granada survived as a Muslim state, but only as a tributary of Castile. Most of its tribute was paid in gold from present-day Mali and Burkina Faso that was carried to Iberia 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, who took Granada into their sphere of influence and occupied some of its cities, like Algeciras. However, they were unable to take Tarifa, which held out until the arrival of the Castilian Army led by Alfonso XI. The Castilian king, helped by Afonso IV of Portugal and Pedro IV of Aragon, decisively defeated the Marinids at the Battle of Salado in 1340 and took Algeciras in 1344. Gibraltar, then under Granadian rule, was besieged in 1349-1350, Alfonso XI along with most of his army perished by the Black Death. His successor, Pedro of Castile, made peace with the Muslims and turned his attention to Christian lands, starting a period of almost 150 years of rebellions and wars between the Christian states that secured the survival of Granada.

In 1469 the marriage of Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile signaled the launching of the final assault on the Emirate of Granada (Gharnatah). The King and Queen convinced the Pope to declare their war a crusade. The Christians crushed one center of resistance after another and finally, in January 1492, after a long siege, the Moorish king, Muhammad abu Abdallah, surrendered the fortress palace, the renowned Alhambra, itself.


The society of Al-Andalus was made up of three main religious groups: Christians, Muslims and Jews. The Muslims, though united on the religious level, had several ethnic divisions, the main being the distinction between the Berbers and the Arabs. Mozarabs were Christians that had long lived under Muslim rule and so had adopted many Arabic customs, art and words, while still maintaining their Christian rituals and their own Romance languages. Each of these communities inhabited distinct neighborhoods in the cities.

The Berbers, who made up the bulk of the invaders, lived in the mountainous regions of what is now the north of Portugal and in the Meseta Central, while the Arabs settled in the south and in the Ebro Valley in the northeast. The Jews worked mainly as tax collectors, in trade, or as doctors or ambassadors. At the end of the fifteenth century there were about 50,000 Jews in Granada and roughly 100,000 in the whole of Islamic Iberia.

Non-Muslims under the Caliphate

 Treatment of non-Muslims

The non-Muslims were given the status of ahl al dhimma (the people under protection), adults paying a "Gezia" tax, equal to 1 Dinar per year with exemptions for old people, women, children and the disabled, whenever there was a Christian authority in the community. When there was no Christian authority, the non-Muslims were given the status of majus.

The treatment of non-Muslims in the Caliphate has been a subject of considerable debate among scholars and commentators, especially those interested in drawing parallels to the coexistence of Muslims and non-Muslims in the modern world. María Rosa Menocal, a specialist in Iberian literature, has argued that "tolerance was an inherent aspect of Andalusian society". In her view, the Jewish and Christian dhimmis living under the Caliphate, while allowed fewer rights than Muslims, were much better off than in other parts of Christian Europe.

Jews constituted more than 5% of the population. Jews from other parts of Europe emigrated to Al-Andalus, where they were treated with dignity, as were Christians of sects regarded as heretical by various European Christian states. Al-Andalus was a key center of Jewish life during the early Middle Ages, producing important scholars and one of the most stable and wealthy Jewish communities. But there is no consensus among scholars that the relationship between Jews and Muslims was indeed a paragon of interfaith relations. Bernard Lewis takes issue with this view, arguing its modern use is ahistorical and apologetic. He argues that Islam traditionally did not offer equality nor even pretended that it did, arguing that it would have been both a "theological as well as a logical absurdity."

Rise and fall of Muslim power

The Caliphate treated non-Muslims differently at different times. The longest period of tolerance began after 912, with the reign of Abd-ar-Rahman III and his son, Al-Hakam II where the Jews of Al-Andalus prospered, devoting themselves to the service of the Caliphate of Cordoba, to the study of the sciences, and to commerce and industry, especially to trading in silk and slaves, in this way promoting the prosperity of the country. Southern Iberia became an asylum for the oppressed Jews of other countries.

Christians, braced by the example of their coreligionists across the borders of al-Andalus, sometimes asserted the claims of Christianity and knowingly courted martyrdom, even during these tolerant periods. For example, 48 Christians of Córdoba were decapitated for religious offences against Islam. They became known as the Martyrs of Córdoba. These deaths played out, not in a single spasm of religious unrest, but over an extended period of time; dissenters were fully aware of the fates of their predecessors and chose to protest against Islamic rule.

With the death of al-Hakam III in 976, the situation worsened for non-Muslims in general. The first major persecution occurred on December 30, 1066 when the Jews were expelled from Granada and fifteen hundred families were killed when they did not leave. Under the Almoravids and the Almohads there may have been intermittent persecution of Jews,  but sources are extremely scarce and do not give a clear picture, though the situation appears to have deteriorated after 1160.

During these successive waves of violence against non-Muslims, many Jewish and even Muslim scholars left the Muslim-controlled portion of Iberia for the then-still relatively tolerant city of Toledo, which had been reconquered in 1085 by Christian forces. Some Jews joined the armies of the Christians (about 40,000), while others joined the Almoravids in the fight against Alfonso VI of Castile.

The 11th century saw Muslim pogroms against Jews in Spain; those occurred in Cordoba in 1011 and in Granada in 1066.

The Almohads, who had taken control of the Almoravids' Maghribi and Andalusian territories by 1147, far surpassed the Almoravides in fundamentalist outlook, and they treated the dhimmis harshly. Faced with the choice of either death or conversion, many Jews and Christians emigrated. Some, such as the family of Maimonides, fled east to more tolerant Muslim lands, while others went northward to settle in the growing Christian kingdoms. However, the Almohads also encouraged the arts and letters, especially the falsafah movement that included Ibn Tufail, Ibn al-Arabi and Averroes.

Medieval Spain and Portugal was the scene of almost constant warfare between Muslims and Christians. Periodic raiding expeditions were sent from Al-Andalus to ravage the Christian Spanish and Portuguese kingdoms, bringing back booty and slaves. In raid against Lisbon in 1189, for example, the Almohad caliph Yaqub al-Mansur took 3,000 female and child captives, while his governor of Córdoba, in a subsequent attack upon Silves in 1191, took 3,000 Christian slaves.


The brilliant Saracenic civilization of Moslem Spain rendered the Moors, even during their declines under the Reyes de Taifas, the most cultured people of the West.

Many tribes, religions and races coexisted in al-Andalus, each contributing to the intellectual prosperity of Andalusia. Literacy in Islamic Iberia was far more widespread than any other country of the West.

From the earliest days, the Umayyads wanted to be seen as intellectual rivals to the Abbasids, and for Córdoba to have libraries and educational institutions to rival Baghdad's. Although there was a clear rivalry between the two powers, freedom to travel between the two Caliphates was allowed, which helped spread new ideas and innovations over time.

In the 10th century, the city of Cordoba had 700 mosques, 60,000 palaces, and 70 libraries, the largest of which had up to 600,000 books. In comparison, the largest library in Christian Europe at the time had no more than 400 manuscripts, while the University of Paris library still had only 2,000 books later in the 14th century.

The name Alhambra comes from an Arabic root which means "red or crimson castle", perhaps due to the hue of the towers and walls that surround the entire hill of La Sabica which by starlight is silver but by sunlight is transformed into gold. But there is another more poetic version, evoked by the Moslem analysts who speak of the construction of the Alhambra fortress "by the light of torches", the reflections of which gave the walls their particular coloration. Created originally for military purposes, the Alhambra was an "alcazaba" (fortress), an "alcázar" (palace) and a small "medina" (city), all in one. This triple character helps to explain many distinctive features of the monument.


The Alhambra and the backdrop of the magnificent Sierra Nevada mountain range


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". Later, al-Mustansir (Al-Hakam II) went yet further, building a university and libraries in Córdoba. Córdoba became one of the world's leading centres of medicine and philosophical debate.

However, when Al-Hakam's son Hisham II took over, real power was ceded to the hajib, al-Mansur Ibn Abi Aamir. Al-Mansur was a distinctly religious man and disapproved of the sciences of astronomy, logic and especially 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. However, with Al-Mansur's death in 1002 interest in philosophy revived. Numerous scholars emerged, including Abu Uthman Ibn Fathun, whose masterwork was the philosophical treatise "Tree of Wisdom". An outstanding scholar in astronomy and astrology was Maslamah Ibn Ahmad al-Majriti (died 1008), an intrepid traveller who journeyed all over the Islamic world and beyond, and who kept in touch with the Brethren of Purity. Indeed, it is said to have been he who brought the 51 "Epistles of the Brethren of Purity" to al-Andalus and who added the compendium to this work, although it is quite possible that it was added later by another scholar of the name al-Majriti. Another book attributed to al-Majriti is the Ghayat al-Hakim "The Aim of the Sage", a book 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 kept studies of it.

A prominent follower of al-Majriti was the philosopher and geometer Abu al-Hakam al-Kirmani. A follower of his in turn was the great Abu Bakr Ibn al-Sayigh, usually known in the Arab world as Ibn Bajjah, "Avempace"

The Andalusian philosopher Averroes (1126–1198) is considered the father of secular thought in Europe and possibly the most important among them. He was the founder of the Averroism school of philosophy, and his works and commentaries had an impact on the rise of secular thought in Western Europe. He also developed the concept of "existence precedes essence".

Another infuential Andalusian philosopher who had a significant influence on modern philosophy was Ibn Tufail. His philosophical novel, Hayy ibn Yaqdhan, translated into Latin as Philosophus Autodidactus in 1671, developed the themes of empiricism, tabula rasa, nature versus nurture, condition of possibility, materialism, and Molyneux's Problem.European scholars and writers influenced by this novel include John Locke, Gottfried Leibniz, Melchisédech Thévenot, John Wallis, Christiaan Huygens, George Keith, Robert Barclay, the Quakers, and Samuel Hartlib.

Astronomy (
Islamic astronomy)

In the 11th-12th centuries, astronomers in Al-Andalus took up the challenge earlier posed by Ibn al-Haytham, namely to develop an alternate non-Ptolemaic configuration that evaded the errors found in the Ptolemaic model.  Like Ibn al-Haytham's critique, the anonymous Andalusian work, al-Istidrak ala Batlamyus (Recapitulation regarding Ptolemy), included a list of objections to Ptolemic astronomy. This marked the beginning of the Andalusian school's revolt against Ptolemaic astronomy, otherwise known as the "Andalusian Revolt".

In the late 11th century, al-Zarqali (Latinized as Arzachel) discovered that the orbits of the planets are elliptic orbits and not circular orbits, though he still followed the Ptolemaic model.

In the 12th century, Averroes rejected the eccentric deferents introduced by Ptolemy. He rejected the Ptolemaic model and instead argued for a strictly concentric model of the universe. He wrote the following criticism on the Ptolemaic model of planetary motion:

"To assert the existence of an eccentric sphere or an epicyclic sphere is contrary to nature. The astronomy of our time offers no truth, but only agrees with the calculations and not with what exists."

Averroes' contemporary, Maimonides, wrote the following on the planetary model proposed by Ibn Bajjah (Avempace):

"I have heard that Abu Bakr [Ibn Bajja] discovered a system in which no epicycles occur, but eccentric spheres are not excluded by him. I have not heard it from his pupils; and even if it be correct that he discovered such a system, he has not gained much by it, for eccentricity is likewise contrary to the principles laid down by Aristotle.... I have explained to you that these difficulties do not concern the astronomer, for he does not profess to tell us the existing properties of the spheres, but to suggest, whether correctly or not, a theory in which the motion of the stars and planets is uniform and circular, and in agreement with observation."

Ibn Bajjah also proposed the Milky Way galaxy to be made up of many stars but that it appears to be a continuous image due to the effect of refraction in the Earth's atmosphere. Later in the 12th century, his successors Ibn Tufail and Nur Ed-Din Al Betrugi (Alpetragius) were the first to propose planetary models without any equant, epicycles or eccentrics. Al-Betrugi was also the first to discover that the planets are self-luminous. Their configurations, however, were not accepted due to the numerical predictions of the planetary positions in their models being less accurate than that of the Ptolemaic model, mainly because they followed Aristotle's notion of perfect circular motion.

 Economics (
Islamic economics in the world)


"The Toledo School" was a famous center of medieval linguistics. Members of this school included; Yehudah ibn Tibbon, Herman the German, Adelard of Bath and Gerard of Cremona.

Medicine (
Islamic medicine)

Muslim physicians from Al-Andalus contributed significantly to the field of medicine, including the subjects of anatomy and physiology. Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi (Abulcasis), regarded as the "father of modern surgery", contributed greatly to the discipline of medical surgery with his Kitab al-Tasrif ("Book of Concessions"), a 30-volume medical encyclopedia which was later translated to Latin and used in European and Muslim medical schools for centuries. He helped lay the foudations for modern surgery, with his Kitab al-Tasrif, in which he invented numerous surgical instruments, including the first instruments unique to women, as well as the surgical uses of catgut and forceps, the ligature, surgical needle, scalpel, curette, retractor, surgical spoon, sound, surgical hook, surgical rod, and specula,] and bone saw.

Ibn Zuhr (Avenzoar) was the earliest known experimental surgeon. In the 12th century, he was responsible for introducing the experimental method into surgery, as he was the first to employ animal testing in order to experiment with surgical procedures before applying them to human patients. He also performed the first dissections and postmortem autopsies on humans as well as animals.

Music (
Andalusian classical music)

A number of musical instruments used in Western music, particularly in Spanish music, are believed to have been derived from Arabic musical instruments used in Al-Andalus: the lute was derived from the al'ud, the rebec (ancestor of violin) from the rebab, the guitar from qitara, naker from naqareh, adufe from al-duff, alboka from al-buq, anafil from al-nafir, exabeba from al-shabbaba (flute), atabal (bass drum) from al-tabl, atambal from al-tinbal, the balaban, the castanet from kasatan, sonajas de azófar from sunuj al-sufr, the conical bore wind instruments, the xelami from the sulami or fistula (flute or musical pipe), the shawm and dulzaina from the reed instruments zamr and al-zurna, the gaita from the ghaita, rackett from iraqya or iraqiyya, the harp and zither from the qanun, canon from qanun, geige (violin) from ghichak,  and the theorbo from the tarab.


Early Muslim sociology


Islamic science, Inventions in the Muslim world and Muslim Agricultural Revolution

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  comunidad islamica de tarrega, Tarrega
  Comunidad Islamica de Torrejón de Ardoz Mezquita An-nur, Torrejon De Ardoz
  Comunidad Islamica de Torrijos, Toledo
  comunidad islamica de villajoyosa, Villajoyosa
  Comunidad Islamica del Principado de Astruias, Gijon
  Comunidad Islamica del principado de Asturias, Oviedo
  Comunidad Islamica Del Principado de Asturias-Oviedo, Oviedo
  Comunidad islamica devaldemoro, Valdemoro
  Comunidad islamica,almuhayerun y alansar, Huelva
  Comunidad Islàmica Suhail, Mezquita de Fuengirola, Fuengirola
  comunidad islámica de corralejo, Corralejo
  comunidad islámica de hellin, Hellin
  Comunidad Islámica de Soria, Soria
  Comunidad Islámica de Torrijos\\\\, Madrid
  Comunidad Islámica de Zaragoza, Zaragoza
  Comunidad Islámica para el Diálogo Interreligioso, Soria
  Comunidad Islámica San Cristobal de los Ángeles, Madrid
  comunidad mezquita al fath, San Antonio Abad
  comunidad musolmana y asosiacion AL FATH de Ripolles, Ripoll
  Comunidad musulmana, Manlleu
  Comunidad musulmana AL HUDA, Barcelona
  comunidad musulmana altawhid mostoles, Madrid
  Comunidad musulmana de alicante, Alacant
  comunidad musulmana de lanzarote, Arrecife
  Comunidad musulmana de marbella al kitab جمعية الكتاب الإسلامية, Marbella
  Comunidad Musulmana de Santa Eulalia, Ibiza
  comunidad musulmana de segovia, Segovia
  Comunidad Musulmana De Tarancón, Tarancon
  Comunidad Musulmana de Tenerife AL-MUHSININ, Los Cristianos
  comunidad musulmana de vic, Barcelona
  Comunidad musulmana de villaverde, Madrid
  Ibnhazmcenter, lleida
  Iman & Ihsan cultural association, Barcelona
  Información del islam en español, Murcia
  Islamic Center, Madrid
  Islamic center, Gironda
  Islamic center, Gironda
  Islamic center, Ceuta
  Islamic Center, Barcelona
  Islamic center of ARRECIFE, Palmas
  Islamic center of Cartagena, Murcia
  Islamic center of GRANADA, Granada
  Islamic center of Sevilla, Seville
  Islamic Center of Fuengirola, Malaga
  Islamic center of Spain, Granada
  Islamic center of Spain, Seville
  Islamic center-Mezquita de la M-30, Madrid
  Islamic commission of Melilla, Melilla
  islamic comunity, Valencia
  Islamic Cultural Center, Torreforta
  Islamic Cultural Center in Valencia, Valencia
  Islamic Religious center, Madrid
  Liga de La Comunidad Islamica de canarias, Las Palmas
Liga de la comunidad islámica de Canarias, Las Palmas De Gran Canaria

Madjed Attauhid, Madrid
  Masjd al islam, Calatayud
  masjed, Santander
  masjed abou baker assedik, Calpe
  Masjed aboubaker, Arteijo
  Masjed Al Ihssan, Almeria
  Masjed al Quds, Gironda
  Masjed Al Rahman, Palafrugell
  Masjed al Wafaa, Gerona
  Masjed al-fath, Barcelona
  Masjed Al-firdaws, Murcia
  Masjed AlFath, Manresa
  Masjed Anasiha, Sabadell
  masjed annour, Puerto De Mazarron
  Masjede zumaraga, Zumarraga
  Masji Alsalam, La Llagosta
  masjid, Pilar De La Horadada
  Masjid, Manacor
  masjid, Leioa
  Masjid AlHidaya, Madrid
  MASJID DAR-US-SALAM, Puerto de la Cruz
  Masjid nour allah مسجد نور الله, Corralejo
  Masjid a nour, Jaen
  Masjid Abrera, Abrera
  masjid al andalos, Altura
  MASJID AL ANSAR, Barcelona
  Masjid al Huda, Logrono
  masjid al huda centro islamico formentera, Palma De Mallorca
  Masjid AL Ihsan, Gipuzkoa
  MASJID AL Momin, Malaga
  MASJID AL RRAHMA, Torredembara
  MASJID AL SALAM, Tarragona
  Masjid Al Salam, Antigua
  Masjid al Tawba, Calella
  MASJID AL TAWBA, Barcelona
  masjid al tawba مسجد التوبة, Barcelona
  Masjid Al-Nasr, Girona
  Masjid Alhidaya, Torres De La Alameda
  Masjid Alhuda, Sevilla
  Masjid Alqods, Don Benito
MASJID ANNOUR, Vitoria-Gasteiz

Masjid Annour, Callosa De Segura
  Masjid annour, Benalmadena
  Masjid Annour Cañada real, Madrid
  Masjid anoor (ERMUA), Bilbao
  Masjid anour, Cadiz
  Masjid arrahma, Yecla
  Masjid Assalam, Bilbao
  Masjid Assunna, Vitoria
  masjid assunna, Lloret De Mar
  MASJID ATTAWBA, Castelldefells
  masjid azzanaa, Benalmadena
  Masjid badr, Vinaros
  Masjid Bilal, Zaragoza
  Masjid Carballera, Orense
  Masjid Cartaya, Cartaya
  Masjid DE RENTERIA, San Sebastian
  Masjid Imam Malik, Crevillente
  Masjid Ismail, Burgos
  Masjid of Calonge, Calonge
  MASJID of SUR, Palmas
  Masjid Omar bin Akhatab, Barcelona
  Masjid puerto lapice (ciudad real), Castilla-La Mancha
  Masjid sunna, Vitoria-Gasteiz
  MASJID YOUNES, Barcelona
  MASJID(mezquita) ATTAQWA, Azuqueca
  Masjid-e-noor, Jerez De La Frontera
  Massjid Altawba, Maspalomas
  MASSJID AS-SAKINA, Miranda De Ebro
  mesquita om alqora, Bilbao
  mezquita al mahabba, Majadahonda
  mezquita al qods, Vitoria-Gasteiz
  MEZQUITA AL SALAM, Caleta De Fustes
  MEZQUITA AL-FATH, Vilafranca De Panades
  Mezquita Al-souna, Guadalix De La Sierra
  Mezquita Annour مسجد النور, Playa De Aro
  Mezquita de Baza, Baza
  Mezquita de la Misericordia, Santa Eulalia Del Rio
  Mezquita de Motril, Motril

Mezquita de Salamanca, Salamanca
  Mezquita del Rey Abdul Aziz Al Saud, Malaga
  Mezquita del Rey Abdul Aziz Al Saud, Marbella
  Mezquita Islamica de vecindario, Las Palmas
  Mezquita islamica de vecindario, Palmas
  Mezquita Nnour, Puerto Real
  mezquito tauba, Gran Canaria
  Mosque, Alicante
  Mosque ABU-BAKR, Algeciras
  Mosque al Andalus, Murcia
  Mosque AL HOUDA, Algeciras
  mosque AL NOUR, Mollerusa
  Mosque Alfath, Tortosa
  Mosque arrida alfaro, Alfaro
  Mosque el Nour xinzo de limia, Ourense
  mosque madani, Vitoria-gasteiz
  Mosque of Jerusalén, Valencia
  Mosque of Granada-La Mezquita de Granada, Granada
  Mosque of khalid, Palmas
  Mosques al firdaws, Lajounqira
  Mosques Al Rahman, Najera
  Moulvi Idris Mosque, Ibiza
  Murabitun Mosque, Logrono
  Muslim association of ZARAGOZA, Zaragoza
  Muslim center, Granada
  Musulmanes Andaluces, Seville
  Organizacion annur, Martos
  Rabita, Murcia
  rachid, Arenys De Mar
  Sultan Ahmet Mosque, Almeria
  Sultan Ahmet Mosque, Delfia
  Universidad Islamica Averroes, Cordoba
  مسجد يوسف-MASJED YOUSSEF, La Garriga
  مسجد الفتح, Cieza
  مسجد الفرقان, Bilbao
  مسجد الامام الاوزاعي, Cadaques
  مسجد الامام الشاطبي, Valencia
  مسجد الرسالة, Sabadell
  مسجد ابو بكر الصديق, Madrid
  مسجد جامع إكوالادا, Barcelona
  Yama'a islámica de Al-Andalus Liga Morisca, Bujalance
الفرقان Mezquita Al Furkan, Vilanova I La Geltru

  المجلس الإسلامي الثقافي بكطالونيا, Barcelona
  المركز الاسلامى فرع برشلونه, Barcelona
  الامام الاوزاعي, Cadagues
الجمعية الإسلامية بتوديلا, Tudela

Islamic Organizations and Services

African Islamic Association in Murcia, El Palmar
  Al falah, Madrid
  AL UMMA Islamic association, Madrid
  Arabian and Islamic Studies Department, Madrid
  Arabian cultural association, Madrid
  Asociación Socio Cultural Nurain, Las Palmas
  Asociacion cultural islamica, Alcasser
  Asociacion cultural islamica, Palma De Mallorca
  asociacion cultural islamica bilal de esparreguera, Barcelona
  Asociacion cultural islamica de castelldefels, Barcelona
  Asociacion el amal, Barcelona
  Asociacion islamica cultural EL-ISLAH, Beniel
  Asociacion Socio-Cultura Al-Mechaal, Madrid
  ASS-ALAME, Almeria
  ASSABIL, Bilbao
  associacin annour, Coin
  Associacio arabo africana de catalunya, Cadaques
  Association Islamic ibn Rochd de el palmar, El Palmar
  Association of Muslim delegates of Madrid, Madrid
  Association of muslims, Jaen
  Association of mUslims of JAEN, Jaen
  Badr, Melilla
  carniceria ayyoubylocutorio zakaria, Talavera De La Reina
  Central Muslim, Granada
  Centro Cultural Islamico Al-Andalus, Jaen
  centro cultural islamico catalan en barcelona, Barcelona
  Communidad musulmana de Polop, Polop De La Marina
  Community of ANDALUS, Granada
  Comunidad Islamica De Caleta de Fuste, Caleta De Fustes
  Comunidad Islamica de Logroño, Logrono
  Comunidad Islamica de Valencia, Mezqita Valencia, Valencia
  comunidad islamicade valladolid, Valladolid
  Comunidad Musulmana AL FALAH, Getafe
  Comunidad Musulmana de Granada - CO.MU.GRA, Granada
  Comunidad musulmanes de Benidorm, Benidorm
  Comunitat Islamica d´Ulldecona, Ulldecona
  Cruïlla-Associción para el diálogo entre las culturas, Hospitalet
  DAR A AR'KAM, Arganda
  dr.bakri eskeif,الدكتور بكري اسكيف, Torre Del Mar
  Egytian Insttitute of Islamic Studies, Madrid
  Federacion Nacional Islamica, Palma De Mallorca
Ibn Taymiyyah Cultural Association, Asturias

Instituto Halal, Soria
  Islam en Murcia, Murcia
  Islamic Association, Malaga
  Islamic Community, Granada
  Islamic community, Palmas
  Islamic community of Alicante, Alicante
  Islamic community of GALICIA, Santiago De Compostela
  Islamic community of Madrid, Madrid
  Islamic community of SEVILLA, Seville
  Islamic Union, Salobrena
  Junta Islámica, Cordoba
  Junta Islámica, Soria
  Junta Islámica Islamic Center, Cordoba
  liga islamica para dialogo y la convivencia en españa, Valencia
  Mohammadia association of Muslims, Ceuta
  Muslim Arab Society, Cordoba
  Muslim Association, Madrid
  Muslim Association, Santiago de Compostela
  Muslim association of Andalucía, Seville
  Muslim association of CEUTA, Ceuta
  Muslim community, Ceuta
  Muslim community of spain, Caceres
  Mutua Islámica para la Repatriación de Féretros, Ibiza
  Religious association, Ceuta
  Sunni muslim association of Spain, Granada
  مجلة المنبر, Barcelona
  الجمعية الإسلامية النور لكايوصا, Alicante
  الجمعية الإسلامية بمدينة أوندارا إقليم ألكانتي ولاية فالنسيا, Ondara
  الجمعية الاسلامية التوفق, Elche
  جريدة الاندلس للأخبار, Marbella

  Islamic Schools/Colleges

academia de idiomas iqra, Madrid
  Asociación Socio Cultural , Isla De Gran Canaria
  carneceria hala grupo abdu S.L, Moncada Y Reisach
  comunidad islamica de montmelo, Montmelo
  Comunidad islamica de valladolid, Valladolid
  Facultad de Estudios Andalusíes, Puebla de Don Fadrique
  Islamic school, Zaragoza
  Jamia Islamia of Andalus, Cordoba
  Madrasa Al Huda, Logrono
  University of ALICANTE- Arabic department, Alicante
  المعهد المصري للدراسات الإسلامية فى مدريد, Madrid
الحجاوي ALHEJJAWI مدرسة, Malaga

   Muslim Owned Business

Al Karam Halal Butchers, Malaga
  Aladdin Palace, Palma De Mallorca
  Alwazgary s.l, Melilla
  Amira Halal Food Group, Malaga
  Auto servicio jabir, Madrid
  Barakaat, Madrid
  Bazar benyahia, Martorell
  Bazar khalifa, Don Benito
  Bazar SAHARA, Cornella De Llobregat
  bazar y libreria annur, Bilbao
  Bilal's Pakistani/Indian, Barcelona
  carneceria halal bel haj, Jaen
  Carneceria halal SALMA, Gijon
  Carnicería halal y Locutorio, Manacor
  CARNICERIA ASSALAM مجزرة السلام, Playa De Aro
  carniceria brahim de carne halal, Jaen
  CARNICERIA EL HALAL, Villarrobledo
  carniceria gaya halal, Gijon
  Carniceria halal, Salamanca
  Carniceria halal, Salou
  Carniceria halal al-andalus, Albacete
  CARNICERIA HALAL FES مجزرة حلال فاس, Albacete
  carniceria la paz halal, Alhama De Murcia
  carniceria los ejbari halal, Alfaro
  Carniceria rio martil, Rubi
  Centro Cultural Hispano Egipcio, Madrid
  CERVIVA, Castellon De La Plana
  Ciberlocutorio Malick, Gijon
  CLINICA DENTAL DR, BAKRI عيادة طبيب الاسنان بكري اسكيف, Malaga
  Comedor Arabe Andalusi, Cordoba
  Comunicaciones y Servicios DARUSSALAM, Tarragona
  cyber youssef ejbari, Alfaro
  Dawa Hispana fashion, Madrid
  Doner Kebab, Toledo
  Dr. Bakri Dentist., Malaga
  Dr. Ghassan Masbout, Valencia
  Dr.Abdel rahman eskeif,الدكتور عبد الرحمن اسكيف, Torre Del Mar
  Expotile S.L., Castellon De La Plana
Farah Bagdad, Madrid

Halal food, Macotera
  Hamsa & Abdelhamid Co., El Fargue
  Instituto Valenciano de Odontología medico-estetica, Valencian Community
  Ismael Bckiri Alonso Muslim Lawyer, Malaga
  jatetxea marrakech kebab halal, Lekeitio
  Kabob, Barcelona
  Kabob Takeaway, Barcelona
  Kashmir Pakistani Restaurant, Malaga
  Kebabish I, Madrid
  Kebabish II, Madrid
  La Isla del Tesoro, Logrono
  local carniceria HALAL SON GOTLEU, Palma
  locotorio la paz, Alicante
  Locutorio DarusSalam, Tarragona
  locutorio tarek c/doctor fleming5, Avila
  Locutorio world center, Huesca
  maescom logistics, Algeciras
  masjid al ansar, Mataro
  Nnitech_bros informatica, Madrid
  ozturk kebab, Malaga
  Panaderia carniceria SAHARA, Cornella De Llobregat
  Panaderia SAHARA, Barcelona
  Peluqueria salon la felicidad abdelaziz lakhal, Puerto Del Rosario
  RAQZ MKST S.L, Barcelona
  Restaurante Arrayanes, Granada
  Restaurante El Azhar, Bilbao
  Restaurante Marhaba, Bilbao
  Resturante la luna c/.local b,urbanizacion tindaya مطعم الحلال, Caleta De Fustes
  Resturent la luna c/.local b,urbanizacion tindaya مطعم الهلال, Cotillo
  Resturent la luna c/.local b,urbanizacion tindaya مطعم الهلال, Puerto Del Rosario
  shawarma Qeen halal, Salamanca
  SoufianeSakouni WebHosting, Barcelona
  telecom center ciber/locutorio, Cadiz
  Tetuan Carniceria (Halal), Estepona
  مجزرة السلام الإسلامية, Puerto Del Rosario
  مجزرة بلينسيا, Villareal
  www.petraservicesِ.8m.comمكتب البتراء, Malaga
yasminatelecom, Ibiza

ziaul Karim Sarker, Barcelona
  الزيتونة للمواد الغذائية, Villareal
جميل باطماني : ترجمان محلف للغة العربية, Valencia

Islam in Spain  (    , November, 2008).
Info please ( ,  November, 2008).
Islam Finder (    , November, 2008).
Al-Andalus (  , November, 2008).
Anonymous, Documents from Representatives of Islamic Organizations in Spain , November 2008.