Iberia: al-Andalus

The southwestern corner of Europe, presently comprising Spain and Portugal. Iberian history and culture is a complex weave of Celtiberian, Phoenician, Roman, Gothic, and Berber influences. This page delineates the Muslim states of Iberia. For the Classical and Christian states, go to Spain & Portugal.

Contains: Albarracin, Algeciras, Almeria, Alpuente, Arcos, Arjona, Badajoz, Baeza, Banu QasiBobastro, Carmona, Constantina, Cordoba, Denia, Gibraltar, Granada, Guadix, Huelva, Ibiza, Jaen, Jerez, Jerica, Lisbon, Lorca, Malaga, Mallorca, Menorca, Mertola, Molina, Moron, Murcia, Murviedro-Sagunto, Niebla, Orihuela, Purchena, Regio, Ronda, Saltes, Santa Maria del Algarbe, Santarem, Segorbe, Segura, Seville, Silves, Tavira, Tejada, Toledo, Tortosa, Valencia, Zaragoza.

ALBARRACÍN (Sahla Banu Razin) In east central Spain, close to the frontier between Castile and Aragon.

ALGECIRAS (al-Djazira al-Hadrá) In extreme southern Spain, opposite Gibraltar.

ALMERÍA (al-Mariyya) In southeastern Spain, along the coast.

ALPUENTE (al-Sahla) A village in eastern Spain, about 40 miles (65 km.) northwest of Valencia.

ARCOS In the far south of Spain, about 30 miles (50 km.) northeast of Cadiz.

ARJONA In south central Spain, about 15 miles (25 km.) northwest of Jaen.

BADAJOZ (Batalyaws) In west-central Iberia, and including much of modern Portugal.

BAEZA In south-central Spain, a little northeast of Jaen.

A Basque-Muslim dynasty that flourished in the upper Ebro Valley (around modern Logroño and Southern Navarra) during the 9th and 10th centuries. Although Muslim, they frequently were in conflict withthe Emirs and Caliphs of Cordoba to their south and often allied with and intermarried with the nobility of neighboring Christian Basque and Spanish kingdoms.

BOBASTRO A locale in far southern Spain, in the eastern slopes of the Serrania de Ronda about 30 miles (48 km.) northwest of Malaga. The site is unoccupied, the nearest inhabited place is the village of Ardales. In the late 9th century, it served as the headquarters of a Mozarab who rebelled against Ummayad authority in Cordoba.

CARMONA (Karmuna) In the south of Spain, a little to the east northeast of Seville.

CONSTANTINAIn the south of Spain, near Seville to the southwest and Cordoba to the east.

CÓRDOBA (Qurtuba) Cordoba was the first capital of an independent Muslim state, al-Andalus. It was established by a refugee of the Caliphal line who fled Baghdad when his family was dispossessed of the Caliphate and slaughtered by the Abbasids. The exiled Ummayad dynasty assumed (929) the authority and title of Caliph in opposition to Baghdad and, from 969, the North African Fatamid Caliphs as well. Andalus shattered over a series of protracted succession crises from 1009 onward, and various Andalusian provinces became independent successor-states for a time. Caliphal pretensions were abandoned after 1031, and a non-monarchic government instituted. Eventually, Cordoba was annexed by one of its own successor children.

DENIA (Daniyya) At the end of the Cabo de la Nao, a peninsula thrusting out into the Mediterranean, toward the Balearic Isles.

GIBRALTAR (Djebel Tariq) The northern "Pillar of Hercules", near the extreme southern end of Spain.

GRANADA (Gharnata) The last remaining Muslim Emirate in Spain, located in the southeast corner of the peninsula.

GUADIX A town in southeastern Spain, 25 miles (40 km.) east of Granada, on the north slope of the Sierra Nevada.

HUELVA (Phoen. Onuba, Arab. Walba) In far southwestern Spain, on the northern arc of the Gulf of Cadiz, about 54 miles (87 km.) west of Seville, and 25 miles (40 km.) east of the Portuguese frontier. It was from here that Columbus began his epochal voyage in 1492, and to here that he returned the next year.

IBIZA (Eivissa) The westernmost of the Balearic Isles.  See also, Mallorca and Menorca.

JAÉN (Djayyan) In southern Spain, about 50 miles (80 km.) east of Cordoba.

JEREZ In the far south of Spain, across the bay and a little inland from Cadiz.

JERICA A small town in eastern Spain, about 40 miles (65 km.) north of Valencia.

LISBON (Lisboa) On the estuary of the Tagus, the largest city in Portugal and it's current capital.

LORCA In southeastern Spain, about 40 miles (65 km.) southwest of Murcia.

MÁLAGA (Malaka) The southeastern portion of the peninsula - the city itself sits at the estuary of the Guadalhorce, 58 miles (93 km.) west-southwest of Granada.

MALLORCA (Majorca) The largest of the Balearic Isles, in the Mediterranean east of Aragon.  See also, Ibiza and Menorca. See also Roussillon for the mainland capital of this state.

MENORCA The easternmost of the Balearic Isles. See also, Ibiza and Mallorca.

MÉRTOLA In southeastern Portugal.

MOLINA A town in southeastern Spain, a short distance northwest of Murcia.

MORÓN (Mawrur) In southern Spain, about 25 miles (40 km.) southeast of Seville.

MURCIA (Mursiyya) In southeastern Spain, near the coast and about 30 miles (50 km.) north of Cartagena.

MURVIEDRO-SAGUNTO In eastern Spain, near Valencia.

NIEBLA (Labla) In southwestern Spain, about 40 miles (65 km.) east of Huelva, and a little north of Las Marismas wetlands.

ORIHUELA In eastern Spain, about 10 miles (15 km.) northeast of Murcia.

PURCHENA In southeastern Spain, about 40 miles (65 km.) north of Almeria.

REGIO (Rayyah) A mountainous district in far southern Spain, comprising a rebel kingdom based at Archidona (a town 27 miles - 43 km. north, of Malaga).

RONDA (Runda) A town in far southern Spain, 42 miles (67 km.) west of Malaga.



SANTAREM In west-central Portugal, northeast and upriver somewhat from Lisbon.

SEGORBE A town in eastern Spain, about 20 miles (32 km.) north of Valencia.

SEGURA de la SIERRA A town in southeastern Spain, in the highlands about 90 miles (144 km.) west of Murcia.

SEVILLE (Ishbiliya) A large and important city in far southwestern Spain, 40 miles from the Gulf of Cadiz.

SILVES (Cheilb) A town in far southern Portugal, near the coast, and about 38 miles (60 km.) west-northwest of the district capital at Faro.

TAVIRA In far southeastern Portugal, by the coast and close to the Spanish frontier.


TOLEDO (Tulaytula) An important city in central Spain, about 40 miles southwest of Madrid. For Christian ecclesiatics (the Primates of all Spain) of this city, go here.

TORTOSA (Turtusha) A town in northeastern Spain, about 90 miles (144 km.) southeast of Zaragoza and an equal distance southwest of Barcelona.

VALENCIA (Balansiyya) An important city and port on the east coast, opposite the Balearic Isles.

ZARAGOZA (Sarakusta) A large city in northeastern Spain, near the old frontier between Aragon and Castile, and about 90 miles south of the Pyrenees Mountains.