History : Mar-Apr 2018
far away from court to Arévalo. Isabella was nevertheless given an education fit for a princess, and she was surrounded by a select group of ladies-in-waiting and tutors appointed by her father before he died. From them she received a substantial education of rhetoric, painting , philosophy, and history. Struggling as king, Henry was unable to pro- vide an heir. His childless first marriage was annulled, but not without having had his sex- ual prowess (or lack thereof) exposed before an ecclesiastic tribunal. His inability to plant the royal seed became a vexing political issue, giv- ing him the moniker that would accompany him into history books: Henry the Impotent. REDRAWING THE MAP Uniting Castile and Aragon created a superstate that included the wealthy Mediterranean seaboard in the east and had western access to the Atlantic, a crucial position during the age of discovery. MAP: EOSGIS.COM THE CROWN OF ISABELLA I, QUEEN OF CASTILE SPAINPHOTOSTOCK Christian power in northern Spain in the 10th century. As the centuries passed, it grew larger, gradually expanding south as Spain’s Muslim rulers, the “Moors,” were weakening. Iberia’s other Christian kingdoms were Ara- gon to the east, Navarre to the north, and Por- tugal to the west. These three other territories had their own royal families, who were deeply interrelated and constantly quarrelling over questions of succession. In negotiating these disputes, Isabella would prove to be as cunning as her older brother Henry was inept. John II died in 1454, and Henry became king of Castile, ruling from the city of Segovia. He sent Isabella, her brother Alfonso, and their mother Isabella’s first child, a girl also named Isabella, is born. She will have four more children: John, Joanna, Maria, and Catherine. Henry IV dies, and soon after, Isabella proclaims herself queen of Castile. Her niece, Joanna, also claims the throne and triggers a civil war. Isabella and Ferdinand defeat Joanna and her Portuguese allies. Ferdinand becomes king of Aragon after the death of his father. 1470 1474 1479 REINO DE ESCOCIA REINO DE INGLATERRA REINO DE NORUEGA REINO DE DINAMARCA SACRO IMPERIO ROMANO GERMÁNICO GRAN DUCADO DE LITUANIA KANATO DE CRIMEA TERRITORIO DE NÓVGOROD PRINCIPADO DE MOSCÚ REPÚBLICA DE GÉNOVA ESTADOS PONTIFICIOS CROWN OF CASTILE CROWN OF ARAGON KINGDOM OF GRANADA KINGDOM OF MOROCCO REINO DE TÚNEZ KINGDOM OF NAVARRE KINGDOM OF PORTUGAL KINGDOM OF FRANCE REINO DE HUNGRÍA PRINCIPADO DE MOLDAVIA REINO DE SU ECIAORDENTEUTÓNIC A REPÚBLICADEVENECIA ALBANIA Toulouse Barcelona Zaragoza Pamplona Burgos Valencia Palma de Mallorca Madrid Ocaña Oporto Lisbon Seville Granada Cádiz Ceuta Tangier Bona Segovia Valladolid Málaga Arévalo Ávila Med iterraneanSea Atlantic Ocean IGNACIO PALACIOS/GETTY IMAGES LAND OF CASTLES ISABELLA WAS BORN AND GREW UP NEAR ÁVILA. THE CITY’S WALLS WERE BEGUN IN THE 11TH CENTURY AS CHRISTIAN CASTILE EXPANDED AND PUSHED THE MUSLIM COMMUNITIES FARTHER SOUTH.