Posts Tagged ‘Spain’

Isabella of Castile: Europe’s First Great Queen

A while back I reviewed Sarah Gristwood’s Game of Queens, a wonderful account of the powerful women who ruled (directly or indirectly) in sixteenth century Europe. Giles Tremlett’s masterful biography of Isabella of Castile is in some ways the prequel to Gristwood’s account. Tremlett sums up the theme of his book in its sub-title: Europe’s…

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Muslim Spain: The Soundtrack

These days, I’m spending a lot of time in Muslim Spain–a golden age of cross-cultural pollination by any standard.  At a time when most of Europe was wallowing in the Dark Ages, Muslim Spain was a center of wealth, learning–and tolerance. If you wanted libraries, hot baths, or good health care, Spain was the place…

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