Al-Andalusian (Islamic Spain) Natural Philosopher Chronology

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Starting in the early eighth century, the Arabs referred to their nascent Iberian domain as al-Andalus, thought to be a corruption of "Vandalicia", a name derived from Vandal invaders in the country. As the Christian Reconquista progressed, the geographical area to which the name was applied contracted. In modern usage Andalusia referes to that region of south-eastern Spain where the Moors had their last foothold in the thirteenth to fifteenth centuries (Watt and Cachia 1965, p. 12). This page is divided into the triad, Visigothic rule c. 414-710; al-Andalus (Islamic Spain) 711-1491; and completion of the Reconquista since 1492. Fine-scale adjustment is best found at WHKMLA: History of al-Andalus: 711-1266, and WHKMLA: History of Spain. Please consult on GLPS2 two additional pages for comprehensive lists of World of Islam natural philosophers by subject or chronology. Euratlas maps by century are thus. 400, 500, 600, 700, 800, 900, 1000, 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400, 1500, 1600.

While Iberian Christians toiled in damp, dark castles, Muslim culture in Al-Andalus flourished to such a degree that in the ninth century, the library and monastery of St. Gall was the largest in Europe, boasting 36 volumes. At the same time, that of Muslim Qurtubah (Cordoba) contained 500,000. Al-Andalus reached its maximum extent at the turn of the eleventh century before running its slow decline to completion several hundreds years later. The region produced the following accomplished natural philosophers (Westernized names appears in parentheses).

  Contemporary event in al-Andalus Natural philosopher
400 c. 414 Visigoths ("West Goths") occupy Roman province of Tarraconensis.

429 Vandals, led by King Geiseric, cross into North Africa from Iberian peninsula, take Carthago ten years later.
550 554 Byzantines invade Iberian peninsula and assume Granada from the Visigoths.

584 Visigoths conquer kingdom of the Suevi (in Galicia).

589 Visigothic king abandons Arianism for Catholicism.
600 624 Visigoths complete reconquest of the Iberian peninsula, held since 554 by the Byzantines.  
650 654 Visigoths codify law.

693 Council decree virtually bans Jews from continuing in commerce.

694 Decree enslaves those who do not accept baptism.
700 710 Party of 400 Muslims land at southernmost tip of Iberian peninsula (west of present-day Tarifa); following year mount full-scale expedition of 7,0000 mostly of Berbers, led by Tariq ibn-Ziyad, Berber client of Musa ibn-Nusayr (Arab governor of north-west Africa). Gibralatar is corruption of "Jabal Tariq" or "Tariq's mountain".

711-716 Tariq ibn-Ziyad defeats King Roderick on the Rio Barbate and Visigothic fugitives at Ecija; later occupies Toledo, Sevilla, Merida, Saragossa, León, Astorga, and Fortun.

c. 713-715 Pamplona, Tarragona, Gerona, Malaga, Elvira fall to the Muslims.

716 Musa ibn-Nusayr's son, 'Abd-al'Aziz, is assassinated.

717 Provincial capital transfers to Qurtubah (Cordoba).

719 Governor Samh occupies Narbonne. Eudo, duke of Aquitano, repulses and kills Samh in 721 at Toulouse.

c. 720s - c. 1200s Arab agricultural revolution transforms crop yield and farming practice across southern Spain. (Notion challenged by Decker (2009)).

725 Carcassonne and Nimes are occupied.

732 'Abd-ar-Rahman al-Ghafiqi defeats Eudo of Aquitane and subdues Bordeaux.

732 Charles Martel, prince of the Franks, defeats a al-Ghafiqi and his Muslim army at the battle of Tours/Poitiers.

734 Arles and Avignon falls to the Muslims; Charles Martel drives them back four years later.

739-757 Alfonso I reconquers the Iberian peninsula's northwest.

741 Berbers revolt against their Arab overlords in northwest Spain following a Berber revolt in North Africa; lay siege to Balj and his Syrian reinforcements, in Ceuta.

741 Balj defeats three columns of Berbers and marches on Qurtubah (Cordoba) to expel the governor who pleaded for intervention; Balj dies the following year.

747 Last al-Andalusian governor, Yusuf ibn-'Abd-ar-Rahman al-Fihri, is appointed by Governor of Ifriqiya (Tunisia).
750 750 Substantial number of al-Andalusian Berbers immigrate to Africa due to a serious famine.

750 'Abd-ar-Rahman (b. 730) of the Umayyad family, dispatches an emissary to al-Andalus.

751-759 Franks recapture Narbonne.

756 'Abd-ar-Rahman defeats Qaysite group and is made emir of al-Andalus in Qurtubah (Cordoba), establishing the Umayyad Emirate.

778 Charlemagne (771-814) campaigns against Saraqusta (Zaragoza).

785-986 Building of the Great Mosque of Qurtubah on the grounds of a Visigothic church.

788 'Abd-ar-Rahman I (r. 756-788), founder of the Qurtubah (Cordoba) Emiratee, dies.

796 Hisham I (r. 788-796), emir, dies.

797 Governor of Tulaytulah (Toledo) beheads Spanish Muslims for showing signs of dissafection; becomes "day of the Foss".
c. 789-857 Abu l-Hasan 'Ali Ibn Nafi' (Ziryab), fl. Qurtubah (Spanish: Cordoba)
800 800 Ten-year rebellion against the Muslims breaks out in the fringes of al-Andalus (Toledo, Merida, Lisbon); Moorish central authorities suppress each.

801 Charlemagne launches incursion into Barshiluna (Barcelona).

809 An Umayyad prince defeats and executes Tumlus, a Muslim rebel who had seized power in Lisbon some years before.

813 Grave of James the Apostle is "discovered" near Santiago de Compostela, in Galicia, beginning the cult of St. James that would unite Iberian Christians of many different petty kingdoms.

818 Emir puts down a rising south of al-Wādi al-Kabīr (Guadalquivir); executes 300 survivors, expells 20,000 families, and ploughs-up town.

819 The Franks suppress revolt in Pamplona.

822 al-Hakam I (r. 796-822), emir, dies.

844 Ramiro I defeats Vikings who raid the Galician estuaries, attack Lisbon, and sack Sevilla, but are shortly afterwards wiped out by a Córdoban relief army
810-887 Abbas Ibn Firnas (Armen Firman), b. Izn-Rand Onda (Spanish: Ronda)
850 850-859 Perfectus, a Christian priest in Muslim-ruled Qurtubah (Cordoba), is beheaded after he refuses to retract numerous insults he made about Muhammad. Numerous other priests, monks, and laity would follow as Christians became caught up in a zest for martyrdom. Forty-eight Christians men and women are decapitated for refusing to convert or blaspheming Muhammad. They will be known as the Martyrs of Córdoba.

852 'Abd-ar-Rahman II (r. 822-852), emir, dies.

875 Spanish Muslim Ibn-al-Jilliqi maintains partial independence in the region of Merida until submitting to central government in 930.

880 Spanish Muslim Ibn-Hafsun revolts in the south at Bobastro. Holds resistance until 917, thereafter, via his sons, against the central government until 927.

884 Sole surviving heir of Musa ibn-Musa ibn-al-Qasi, governor of Tudela, sells Saraqusta (Zaragoza) to Emir Muhammad I.

886 Muhammad I (r. 852-886), emir, dies.

888 al-Mundhir (r. 886-888), emir, dies.
900 905 Sancho I of Pamplona usurps the Basque kingdom of Pamplona with the help of Alfonso III of León, Raymond I, Count of Pallars and Ribagorza and the Banu Qasi.

909 Fatimids establish dynasty in Ifriqiya (Tunisia), 969 in Egypt.

912 'Abd-Allah (r. 888-912), emir, dies; replaced by 'Abd-ar-Rahman III, who launches raiding campaigns each spring against the Christian frontier.

913 Ordoño II of León subdues Évora (Talavera) from the Muslims.

917 Ordoño II defeats an army under Emir Abd-ar-Rahman III at the battle of San Esteban de Gormaz.

918 'Abd-ar-Rahman III defeats the Christians at the battle of Évora (Talavera).

920 Abd al-Rahman III defeats the armies of the Kingdom of León at the battle of Valdejunquera.

920 Muslim forces take the city of San Esteban de Gormaz, cross the Pyrenees into Gascony, and reach the gates of Toulouse; Muez garrison is killed.

923 Muslim forces destroy Pamplona.

929 'Abd-ar-Rahman III, faced with the threat of invasion by the Fatimids, proclaims himself as caliph, breaking all ties with the Abbasid Caliphate in Baghdad, and rules over Muslims in Spain and North Africa.

930 Batlabus (Badajoz) submits to 'Abd-ar-Rahman III.

930-950 Ramiro II of León defeats Abd al-Rahman III at Simancas, Osma, and Évora (Talavera).

937 Lord of Saraqusta's (Zaragoza) allegience transfer to the King of León fails after a siege restores control to Rahman III.

939 Ramiro of León defeats 'Abd-ar-Rahman III at Simancas, near Valladolid. Madrid recaptured by the Christians, Ramiro II's routing of Muslim forces is severe, nearly kills Rahman III. Following defeat, Rahman III vows to never personally lead another expedition. Muslims recapture Madrid the following year
c. 900-960 Muhammed ibn Umail al-Tamimi (Zadith Senior or Hamuelis), fl. North Africa and al-Andalus

936-1013 Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi (Albucasis); b. Medina Azahara (English: Zahra), near Qurtubah (Spanish: Cordoba)

c. 944-c.994 Ibn Juljul, b. Qurtubah (Spanish: Cordoba)
950 951 King Ramiro II of León dies; internal disputes weaken Iberian Christian states.

955 Ordoño III of León attacks Lisbon.

960-c. 1000 Muslim control of Iberian peninsula reaches its maximum extent.

961 'Abd-ar-Rahman III (r. 912-961), emir, dies.

974 A Cordoban expedition under Ibn Tumlus crushes a rebellion in Isbiliya (Sevilla).

976 al-Hakam II (r. 961-976), emir, dies. Al-Mansur takes over in the name of his protégé Hisham II, becoming a military dictator usurping caliphal powers. The Christians take advantage of the resulting confusion and commence raids into Muslim territory.

977 Al-Mansur successfully leads an army against the Christians.

978 Leonese forces under Garci Fernández and Ramiro III of León suffer the worst in a string of defeats at San Esteban de Gormaz (also defeated at Rueda and Torrevicente), eventually leading to the revolt of the Galacian nobles and the abdication of Ramiro in favor of Bermudo II of León.

981 Al-Mansur defeats Ramiro III of León at the battle of Rueda and collects tribute.

985 Al-Mansur sacks Barshiluna (Barcelona).

987 Al-Mansur razes Christian Coimbra.
994-1064 Ibn Hazm, b. Qurtubah (English: Cordoba).

997-1074 Ibn al-Wafid (Abenguefit), fl. Tulaytulah (Latin: Toletum; Spanish, English: Toledo)

1008 Maslamah Ibn Ahmad al-Majriti, fl. al-Andalus (Spanish: Andalucia; English: Andalusia) dies
1000 1010 North African Berber armies raze Medinat al-Zahra.

1010 Muhammad II (d. 1010) appeals to a Christian Castilian army and routs the Berbers.

1010 Suleiman and his Berber armies besiege Qurtubah (Cordoba).

1033 Moorish kingdom Taifa gains independence.

1035 King Ferdinand I of León assumes throne.

1040 Taifa of Silves gains independence

1043 Rodrigo Diaz Vivar, whom the Muslims would name "El Cid Campeador" (Lord Winner of Battles) is born in Burgos.
1029-1070 Said al-Andalusi, b. al-Mariyyah (Spanish: Almeria)

1029-1087 Al-Zarqali (Arzachel), fl. Tulaytulah (Latin: Toletum; Spanish, English: Toledo)
1050 1053 Al-Mutadid, emir of Isbiliya (Spanish: Sevilla), drives Berbers from Arcos, Morón and Ronda.

1055 Al-Mutadid drives Berbers from Algeciras.

1056 Almoravids (al-Murabitun) Dynasty begins its rise to power; Berber dynasty who would rule North Africa and Islamic Iberia until 1147

1057 Al-Mutadid drives Almoravids from Carmona

1085 Alfonso captures Tulaytulah (Toledo), old Visigothic capital of Spain.

1085 Almoravids (from al-murabit, or "religious ascetics") conquer al-Andalus
c. 1050 Allah Muhammad ibn Ibrahim ibn Bassal, fl. mid 11th century in Tulaytulah (Latin: Toletum; Spanish, English: Toledo)

c. 1068 Abu al-Salt, fl. Deniyya (Latin: Dianum; Spanish: Dénia)

1091-1161 Abu Marwan ibn Zuhr (Avenzoar or Abumeron), fl. al-Andalus (Spanish: Andalucia; English: Andalusia)

1095-1138 Ibn Bajjah (Avempace), b. Saraqusta (Latin: Caesaraugusta; Spanish: Zaragosa)

1099-1165/66 Muhammad al-Idrisi (Dreses), b. Ceuta (Carthaginian: Abyla; Latin: Septa)
1100 1147-1173 Almohads (from al-muwahhidun or "monotheists") supplant Almoravids.

1147-1238 Almohads rule most of al-Andalus.
1100-1150 Jabir ibn Aflah, b. Isbiliya (Spanish: Sevilla; English: Seville)

1105-1185 Ibn Tufail (Abubacer), b. Wadi-Aci (Spanish: Guadix)

1126-1198 Ibn Rushd (Averroes), b. Qurtubah (Spanish: Cordoba)

c. 1126 Ibn al-Hafiz (Arthephius, Artefius, Artefii), fl. al-Andalus

1135-1204 Moses ben-Maimon (Maimonides, Mūsā ibn Maymūn, or Rambam), b. Qurtubah (Spanish: Cordoba)

1144 Gerard of Cremona (1114-1187) translates Islamic texts including Kitab al-Tasrif
1150 1160-1226 Joseph ben Judah of Ceuta, b. Ceuta (Carthaginian: Abyla; Latin: Septa)

1165 Muhammad ibn Aslam Al-Ghafiqi, fl. al-Andalus (Spanish: Andalucia; English: Andalusia) dies

1180 Abu Jafar ibn Harun al-Turjali, b. Turjalah (Latin: Turgalium; Spanish: Trujillo)

1197-1248 Ibn al-Baitar, b. Dimashq (English: Damascus)
1200 1212 Combined forces of Castile, Aragon, Portugal, and Navarre defeat emir Muhammad III al-Nasir at the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa. c. 1200s Abu al-Abbas al-Nabati flourishes

1204 Nur ad-Din al-Bitruji (Al-Bitruji or Alpetragius), fl. al-Andalus (Spanish: Andalucia; English: Andalusia) dies
1300   1313-1374 Ibn al-Khatib; b. Medina Lawsa (Spanish: Loja)
1350   1363 French surgeon Guy de Chauliac (1300-1368) quotes Kitab al-Tasrif over 200 times in his book, Chirurgia Magna.
1450 1469 Marriage of Ferdinand II of Aragon (1452-1516) and Isabella of Castile (1451-1504) unite the two largest Christian Spanish kingdoms.

1483 Castilian force raids into the mountains of Axarquia and captures Emir Muhammad XII of Granada, the first king of Granada to be captured by the Christians.

1492 Combined Spanish forces defeat Granada, last Moorish state.

1492-1507 Remaining Muslims in Castile are forcibly converted to Christianity. Compelled Muslims become known as moriscos, Jews marranos.

1496 Portugal expels Muslims.

1499 Queen Isabella I decrees all Spanish Muslims to convert or exile.
1471 Kitab al-Tasrif, printed in Venice, becomes standard medical text.
1500 1516 King Charles I ascends throne of Castile and Aragon, forms modern nation of Spain. Muslims forced to convert in kingdom of Navarre.

1525 Muslims forced to convert in kingdom of Aragon by King Charles V.
1550 1567 Phillip II issues decree to ban Arabic and Berber languages in Spain.

1568 Moriscos revolt under leadership of Aben Humeya after King Philip II introduces laws that prohibit Moorish culture. The rebellion is suppressed in 1571 by John of Austria, and rebels are deported to different parts of the northern half of the Iberian peninsula.
1570 Jacques Daléchamps extensively quotes Kitab al-Tasrif

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