On the western fringes of Africa and Europe, the Khalifah rules over a pleasant and bountiful kingdom. Their citizens excel at the arts and sciences. Its scholars keep great libraries; its architects raise great palaces, and create pleasant gardens. The leaders of the Kingdom follow the teachings of Islam, revealed through the Quran and the Sunnah, as do many of their people. Even the barbarous Christians of the north cannot but be awed by the wealth and grandeur of this land.
ALMORAVID 1085 – 1250
ALMOHAD & ANDALUSIANS 1120 – 1270
The Muslims, mainly Berbers from nearby Morocco, invaded Spain in the year 711 and, within five years, had gained control of almost the entire peninsula. Not all of the conquest was a matter of force; several local leaders accepted Islam along with their people and even aided in the conquest. The Muslims did not particularly encourage such conversions, since they hoped to become rich in the new land, and fellow Muslims even new converts paid no taxes and were free men. Consequently, there was a large Christian population in Muslim lands (called Mozarabs) who adopted much Muslim culture and customs but clung to their Christian faith. There were some regions that the Muslims were unable to subdue, such as the Basques in the rugged Pyrenean lands of the North.