This is the essay for the 17th week of the 7th Grade Ron Paul Curriculum. It’s about the Catholic Monarchs or by their real names Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain.
Ferdinand and Isabella
Ferdinand and Isabella were the king/queen of Spain during the mid-15th and early-16th centuries. More specifically Ferdinand was the king of Aragon and Isabella was the queen of Castile.
In 1469 Ferdinand and Isabella married each other strengthening the ties between both countries. In 1479 Ferdinand was elected king of Aragon after his father’s death. Later that year Castile finished a war with Portugal who thought they should be the queen of Castile, instead of Isabella. But a peace treaty was made.
After 10 years the two kingdoms were able to join together, which was done. Isabella and Ferdinand made very many advancements in Spain. These developments didn’t only change Spain, but also the rest of the world. Ferdinand and Isabella were known as the Catholic Monarchs because they worked together and they were devoted to Catholicism.
One of the developments they made was that they recreated royal authority in Spain by creating a police force and a court for Spanish royals. These Police were known as the Royal Brotherhood. A special thing that Ferdinand and Isabella did was move from city to another city every once in a while, instead of staying in one royal palace, like most did. They did this so they could keep track on everybody in every city.
The Spanish state started the Spanish Inquisition, which was supposed to remove all Jews and Muslims out of Spain. The Spanish Inquisition is also quite different than the other inquisitions because it was controlled by the state, not the church. This was done in 1492. The Jews and the Muslims either had to convert to Christianity or leave Spain. The Jews tried moving into Portugal and this worked for a time until the Portuguese inquisition started. The Muslims however, fought back and were trying to hold the Muslim part of Spain, which was called Grenada. But during the same year, Grenada was taken over and the Muslims were forced to leave or convert.
The last thing that the Spanish did that was impressive was that they funded Columbus for his journey to discover a new route into Asia. At first, Columbus was rejected by many kings and queens, because they thought he was crazy and that it would never work. But Ferdinand and Isabella agreed on his expedition and due to the colonies that Spain gained in South America, the Spanish gained a lot of riches over the passing centuries.
Isabella secured Spain’s safe succession by marrying her 5 daughters to kings/princes of England, Portugal, Wales, the Hapsburg Dynasty and H.R.E. As you’ve seen the Spanish were pretty powerful during this time until they lost their colonies.