Q is for Queen of 1492

Expulsion of Jews from Spain, 1492. Painting by Solomon Hart, from freespeech.org.

Isabella I of Castile was a bad ass monarch, one of the strong queens of history. She and hubby Ferdinand made the ultimate move to propel their newly-formed country into a world power. They did it with conviction, with strength and piety… and by instituting a religious pogrom to eliminate all the unbelievers and launching the Inquisition. Welcome to Spain, 1492.

Young, Catholic, and Virtuous in Intention

When her father died without a male heir, Isabella was the named heir, but she had to fend off others who tried to take the throne. It was Castile at issue at the time, and neighboring states in Afonso and Aragon both vied for her hand in marriage and tried to create dynasties to absorb Castile. Isabella had long been engaged to Ferdinand of Aragon. She kept that promise and united Castile and Aragon together.

Young Isabel, next to Madonna on the Fly, 1520. Photo from wikimedia.
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