According to Vaultedwatches, this political fragmentation of the Moors allowed the Christian states of the North to proceed more resolutely in the counter-offensive for the reconquest. These states were formed for the withdrawal, at the time of the Muslim invasion, of not a few indigenous people on the mountains of Asturias, where, according to a tradition that is not entirely sure, King Pelagius would have beaten (718) the Arabs in Covadonga and organized the first Christian kingdom of Oviedo, which became the kingdom of Asturias in 740. Bold offensive attacks made by Pelagius’ successors, Alfonso I (739-56) and Alfonso II (792-842), added Galicia, and perhaps even the city of León; in the 9th century. the southern frontier was carried as far as the Duero river and the state capital was transported from Oviedo to León (since 918 the kingdom took the name of the kingdom of León). The victory of Ramiro II (931-51) over the Muslims at Simancas (939) had a European resonance. In the following period, however, the civil strife here also led to a notable weakening of the state: the count of Castile made himself independent from the king of León; on his example other powerful feudal lords moved, to the point that King Bermudo II (982-99) had to invoke the help of al-Mansur, who put the whole country to fire and sword. The kingdom of León was not by now, in the 10th century, the only Christian kingdom in Spain; the offensive conducted there by Charlemagne had created the Marca Hispanica and, when it disintegrated, the kingdom of Aragon with the county of Barcelona had arisen. There was also, of uncertain origin, the kingdom of Navarre, formerly known as Pamplona. At the beginning of the 11th century. such was, therefore, the situation of the Christian States, that, united their forces, in a very daring raid they had been able to go as far as Cordova (1010). Family ties, marriages, etc. made possible, in this period, also a first grouping of these states (reunion of Navarre, Aragon, León and Castile under Sancho Garcés III of Navarre, about 1000-1035), however, which broke shortly afterwards due to the division of the dominion between the sons of Sancho III and the consequent, complicated dynastic struggles. After the first victories, Christian penetration into the Muslim Spain had come to a halt. Invoked by the kings of of León and of Castile under Sancho Garcés III of Navarre, around 1000-1035), which broke shortly afterwards due to the division of the dominion between the sons of Sancho III and the consequent, complicated dynastic struggles. After the first victories, Christian penetration into the Muslim Spain had come to a halt. Invoked by the kings of of León and of Castile under Sancho Garcés III of Navarre, around 1000-1035), which broke shortly afterwards due to the division of the dominion between the sons of Sancho III and the consequent, complicated dynastic struggles.
After the first victories, Christian penetration into the Muslim Spain had come to a halt. Invoked by the kings of taifas, the Almoravid Berbers, led by Yusuf ibn Tashufin, had passed into Spain and had defeated Alfonso VI of Castile at Zallaqa (1086). A few years later, we witnessed the return of the Almoravids, who between 1091 and 1110 reconquered much of the ancient Muslim lands, including Zaragoza, and established a new regime of fanatic religious intolerance. A political-religious revolution, which broke out in the High Atlas by the Almohads, was immediately reflected in the Spain, where the Almoravid dominion collapsed in the face of the expedition of the almohad ‛Abd al-Mu’min (started in 1146; Mallorca, the last bastion of the Almoravids, fell in 1202). Less intolerant than their predecessors, the Almohads managed for some time to stop the advance of the Christian kings of Castile and Aragon (1195, victory at Alarcos); but, later weakened by the occurrence of dynastic struggles, they were definitively defeated in Las Navas de Tolosa (1212). Having opened the way to the South, the Christian forces quickly swept the independent Almohad kingdoms, which arose as a result of the defeat (Valencia, Murcia, Niebla, etc.), and around 1270 they reduced the Muslim dominion to the kingdom of Granada alone., which nevertheless still lasted until 1492. The last phase of the struggle against the Muslims clearly shows that the Iberian Peninsula, in which we must also consider Portugal (detached from Castile, county since 1097, kingdom since 1143), is under the effect of two great driving forces: Aragon and Castile. Aragon, detached from Navarre, ended up joining Navarre itself in 1076, keeping it until 1134; finally, in 1137, the marriage between Raimondo Berengario IV, count of Barcelona, and Petronilla, heir to the throne of Navarre, had allowed the union between Catalonia and Aragon in that Catalan-Aragonese confederation (generally known, later, under the simple name of the kingdom of Aragon), which subsequently was, at times, the most dynamic element in the history of Spain. A vigorous policy of reconquest on Muslims was then conducted, especially under Raimondo Berengario IV (1131-62), Alfonso II (1162-96) and James I (1213-76): a policy that led to the conquest of the kingdoms of Valencia, Murcia, of the Balearics and the definitive settlement of the Aragonese borders. The monarchy of Castile and León, whose two Crowns, united since 1037, split again in 1065-72 and 1157-1230, was instead the heir to the work of the Asturian monarchy: reaching the Tagus line, threatened the S southern and finally, under Ferdinand III (1217-52), conquered Cordoba, Jaén, Seville, Andalusia and went as far as Cadiz (1236-48); at the same time the center of gravity shifted towards the South (1085, transfer of the capital to Toledo) and, with 1230, the unity was firmly and forever constituted: