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Baldwin, M. W. (ed.) / Volume I: The first hundred years

II: Conflict in the Mediterranean before the First Crusade,   pp. [30]-[79] PDF (10.8 MB)

Page 37

the raid. In the west the Christian frontier retreated to the Douro. 
 Neither Bermudo II nor al-Mansür long outlived the sack of Compostela.
Bermudo's son and successor, Alfonso V 1027), was barely five years of age
when he came to the throne. The caliphate in ioo8 began to totter toward
its fall. Alfonso succeeded in effecting a substantial reorganization of
the king dom and attended to the rebuilding and repopulation of de vastated
places. He held a council in his capital of Leon (1020) and granted a charter
to the city. He pressed the campaign against the Moslems beyond the Douro
in Portugal and died at the siege of Viseu. The ability of the count of Castile
at this time to stand off and bargain with opposing Moslem factions who sought
his services is a signal of the approaching dis integration of the caliphate.
Bermudo III (1027—1037) succeeded his father on the throne. He was
married to the sister of Garcia, count of Castile. Another sister of Garcia
was the wife of the king of Navarre, Sancho "the Great" (1000—1035).
Count Garcia was murdered in 1028 as the result of a feud with an other comital
family. Immediately Sancho of Navarre advanced the claims of his wife to
the county of Castile. War followed between Navarre and Leon. Difficulties
were, at least tem porarily, settled by mediators. Bermudo III was relegated
to Galicia, and Sancho's second son Ferdinand was married to Bermudo's sister.
 Sancho of Navarre now ruled over an impressive territory in cluding in addition
to Navarre, now extended beyond the Ebro, Leon with the Asturias, and Cantabria,
the Basque provinces, the counties of Aragon, and suzerainty over the Catalan
counties. Even though his authority over the Basque provinces east of Navarre
and over Barcelona rested on a somewhat variable allegiance, his dominions
included some third of the peninsula and extended from the Atlantic to the
Mediterranean. With the end of the caliphate of Cordova (1031) and the division
of Moslem Spain into a score of rival petty emirates, no power in the peninsula
could compare to his. But Sancho could not avoid a return to the practice
of dividing his vast possessions among his heirs. His political testament
recognized Garcia as his successor in Navarre but established the second
son, Ferdinand (1035—1065), in Castile with the title of king. Sobrarbe
and Ribagorza were given to Gonzalo but soon passed to the illegitimate son
Ramiro, whom Sancho had named king 

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