The Reconquest took place in medieval Spain and Portugal through a series of campaigns by Christian states that were carried out to recover the territory from the Muslims or Moors , who had occupied most of the Iberian Peninsula at the beginning of the 8th century.

  • When was it: AD 722 C. – January 2, 1492
  • Where was it:  Iberian Peninsula

What was the Reconquest?

It is known as the Reconquista to the period of the history of the Iberian Peninsula that lies between the conquest of Hispania and the fall of Granada to the Christian kingdoms that were in expansion.


What did it consist of

The Reconquest consisted of isolating the northern part of the mountain of the Iberian Peninsula , through a restorative and liberating process of the immense Hispanic-Visigoth Christian population that existed in the place, which were also known as the Mozarabs.


Characteristics of the Reconquest

Its main characteristics were the following:

  • It happened in the Iberian Peninsula .
  • The Christian and Muslim kingdoms coexisted and fought within the peninsular territory.
  • The term is used in Spain and in various historical periods.
  • It began with the Battle of Covadonga .
  • The Reconquest ended with the conquest of the emirate of Granada, a Muslim state on the peninsula.
  • The peninsula was later controlled and ruled by Christian rulers.

Where and when did it take place

The Reconquest took place in the Iberian Peninsula more or less 780 years ago in a period between the Umayyad conquest of Hispania and the fall of the Nasrid Kingdom of Granada before the increasingly expanding Christians. It began with the Battle of Covadonga which was the first victory of the Christian military forces in Iberia.


During the year 711, Muslims were found in practically all of Spain . Only in the mountainous region of the North did the Spanish rule. For this reason the Christian kingdoms set themselves the goal of reconquering their territory. After the triumph of Covadonga , in the year 722, a slow but persistent process began that would take them south. Then the kingdoms of Asturias , León , Navarra , Portugal , Castile and Aragon were born so that finally in the year 1492, during the reign of the Catholic kings , the taking ofGranada , the last Muslim stronghold , will put an end to the Reconquest .

Stages of the Reconquest

The stages were:

First stage

The Christian victory in Covadonga took place and a long period began where the Christian groups from the north strengthened their territory by advancing towards the south. The kingdom of Asturias managed to reach the Duero line by transferring the kingdom’s political center to León.

Second stage

Taking advantage of the Muslim weakness after the end of the Caliphate and the separation of the Taifa Kingdoms , León and Castilla that surpassed the Central Mountain Range and occupy the Tagus basin . Toledo was reconquered in 1085 and its occupation meant the incorporation into its kingdom of the territory located between the Central System and the Tagus River . Alfonso I of Aragon reconquered Zaragoza and Ramón Berenguer IV, Count of Barcelona, ​​conquered Tortosa and Lleida . While Portugal conquered Lisbon in 1147.

Third stage

He came after the interruption of the advance with the arrival of the Almohad and with the passage of time Castilla-Leon managed to dominate the valley of the Guadiana and Sierra Morena . This process ended with the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa , which allowed the Christian advance towards the Guadalquivir valley and Valencia .

Fourth stage

There was a rapid occupation of the Guadalquivir valley by Fernando III the Saint and of Valencia and the Balearic Islands by Jaime I the Conqueror . The Muslim stronghold of Granada remained until 1492.

Featured Battles

Among its main battles are:

Battle of the Babias , Guadalacete , Plvoraria , the Burbia river , Lutos , Morcuera , Valdejunquera , Clavijo , Covadonga and the Strait .

Prominent figures

  • Pedro III of Aragon
  • Alfonso V of Aragon
  • Juan II of Aragon
  • Aznar Galindez
  • Peter II The Catholic
  • James I the Conqueror
  • Alfonso Henriques
  • Pedro I of Castile

Causes of the Reconquest

  • Return the throne to Fernando VII to recover the territory lost while he was imprisoned and become independent from Spain .
  • Spain had been invaded by the Muslims .
  • The region was divided into four Christian kingdoms and a single Muslim kingdom located in Granada.
  • The search for unification in a single Christian kingdom .
  • End the caliphate .


  • The Muslim-dominated Iberian Peninsula was recovered .
  • Spain manages to position itself as a political and military power .
  • The expansion of the territory is achieved .
  • Christendom is strengthened .


It was important because through it , Ferdinand VII managed to regain the throne after being released and again established the absolutist regime in Spain, a reaction that moved to America , also returning to the colonial administration .

Books about the reconquest

  • The Adventure of the Reconquest of Juan Antonio Cebrián
  • During the Reconquest of Alberto Blest
  • Reconquista, historical novel
  • Reconquest of María Lara

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