A History of Medieval Spain / Edition 1

Paperback (Print)
Rent from BN.com
(Save 66%)
Est. Return Date: 08/02/2015
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $20.00
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 33%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (12) from $20.00   
  • New (5) from $22.83   
  • Used (7) from $20.00   


Medieval Spain is brilliantly recreated, in all its variety and richness, in this comprehensive survey. Likely to become the standard work in English, the book treats the entire Iberian Peninsula and all the people who inhabited it, from the coming of the Visigoths in the fifth century to the reign of Ferdinand and Isabella. Integrating a wealth of information about the diverse peoples, institutions, religions, and customs that flourished in the states that are now Spain and Portugal, Joseph F. O'Callaghan focuses on the continuing attempts to impose political unity on the peninsula.

O'Callaghan divides his story into five compact historical periods and discusses political, social, economic, and cultural developments in each period. By treating states together, he is able to put into proper perspective the relationships among them, their similarities and differences, and the continuity of development from one period to the next. He gives proper attention to Spain's contacts with the rest of the medieval world, but his main concern is with the events and institutions on the peninsula itself. Illustrations, genealogical charts, maps, and an extensive bibliography round out a book that will be welcomed by scholars and student of Spanish and Portuguese history and literature, as well as by medievalists, as the fullest account to date of Spanish history in the Middle Ages.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Joseph F. O'Callaghan has met a major, long-felt need with a clearly written, balanced, thorough survey that belongs in every history collection. His Spain is the entire peninsula—Islamic, Jewish, Christian, Portuguese, and Catalonian as well as Castilian. A substantial political narrative is followed by chapters on government, social and economic developments, and religion and culture. The author even-handedly represents the major sides in disputed issues, for his aim is to present the current state of scholarship in a simple narrative form. He has succeeded admirably."—Library Journal

"Joseph O'Callaghan has now given us, for the first time, a solid and in-depth survey in English on the peninsular kingdoms, drawing together the myriad recent contributions, with the expertise of a recognized scholar in the field and the practicality of a long-time teacher of the topic. . . . Competence, thorough inclusiveness, clear organization, and solidity are the qualifiers which best sum O’Callaghan’s accomplishment."—The History Teacher

"This book is a comprehensive narrative history based on an impressively wide reading in the sources and secondary literature. It should prove useful to teachers, students, and general readers in European history. . . . Soundly traditional in its organization, it gives primacy to political events without neglecting institutional, social, and cultural matters."—American Historical Review

"There is no existing substitute for this volume in English for the undergraduate or graduate student seeking a reliable orientation to medieval peninsular history."—Choice

"O'Callaghan's A History of Medieval Spain is indispensable to the medievalist and to the Latin-Americanist alike. It is encyclopedic in nature, making it a valuable reference tool. . . . On the whole, it represents considerable familiarity with the sources of information and learned condensation of that material. The chapters on society, economy, and culture give the reader a wider view than a skeletal political history of medieval Spain."— Southeastern Latin Americanist

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801492648
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/1983
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 736
  • Sales rank: 629,595
  • Product dimensions: 6.07 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 1.54 (d)

Meet the Author

Joseph F. O'Callaghan is Professor Emeritus of History at Fordham University. He is a past president of the American Catholic Historical Association and the Academy of American Historians of Medieval Spain.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Abbreviations for Citations

1. The Visigothic Kingdom
2. Visigothic Government
3. Visigothic Society and Culture

4. The Emirate of Córdoba
5. The Caliphate of Córdoba
6. Government, Society, and Culture in al-Andalus, 711-1031
7. Government, Society, and Culture in Christian Spain, 711-1035

8. Alfonso VI, the Taifas, and the Almoravids
9. Alfonso VII and the Leonese Empire
10. The Duel with the Almohads
11. Government, 1031-1212
12. Society and the Economy, 1031-1212
13. Religion and Culture, 1031-1212

14. The Great Reconquest
15. Alfonso X and the Lure of Empire
16. The Overseas Expansion of the Crown of Aragon
17. The Straits, the Mediterranean, and Civil War
18. Government, 1212-1369
19. Society and the Economy, 1212-1369
20. Religion and Culture, 1212-1369

21. The Early Trastámaras
22. The Hegemony of the Trastámaras
23. Government, 1369-1479
24. Society and the Economy, 1369-1479
25. Religion and Culture, 1369-1479

The Catholic Kings and the Perfect Prince

1. Umayyad Emirs and Caliphs of Córdoba, 756-1031
2. Kings of Asturias-León to 1037
3. Rulers of Navarre, Aragon, and Barcelona to 1035
4. Rulers of Portugal, León, and Castile, 1035-1214
5. Rulers of Navarre, Aragon, Catalonia, and Provence, 1035-1214
6. Kings of Navarre, 1194-1512
7. Kings of León-Castile, 1214-1504
8. Kings of Portugal, 1211-1521
9. Kings of Aragon, 1213-1516
10. The Nasrid Kings of Granada, 1232-1492

General Works
Part I: The Visigothic Era
Part II: The Ascendancy of Islam
Part III: A Balance of Power, from the Fall of the Caliphate to Las Navas de Tolosa
Part IV: The Great Reconquest and the Beginnings of Overseas Expansion
Part V: The Struggle for Peninsular Union
Epilogue: The Catholic Kings and the Perfect Prince


Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2014

    Highly recommended

    If you want a comprehensive book on medieval Spain, this is it. O'Callaghan covers the political, cultural, administrative, and religious aspects of this period in one single volume. I would not recommend this to someone who hasn't had some grounding in medieval history already, but it's a good introduction to the topic.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)