NIGHTBRINGER | The Arthurian Encyclopedia


Spanish: Navarra

Navarre is a historic region located in northern Spain and southwestern France.

According to both Der Pleier’s Tandereis and the Alliterative Morte Arthure, it was part of Arthur’s domain.

Navarre | 0 to 800 AD

Roman Influence
In the centuries leading up to the Common Era, the area that would become Navarre was part of the Roman province of Hispania. Roman influence left its mark on the region through the construction of roads, bridges, and other infrastructure.

Visigothic Rule
Following the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the fifth century, the Visigoths established their rule over Hispania, including parts of what is now Navarre. The Visigothic Kingdom had its capital in Toledo and exercised control over the region.

Rise of the Kingdom of Pamplona
The Kingdom of Pamplona, which would later become the Kingdom of Navarre, began to emerge in the late eighth century. Its origins are closely tied to the Basque people and their resistance against the expanding Muslim Umayyad Caliphate, which had conquered much of the Iberian Peninsula.

Basque Influence
The Basque people had a significant presence in the Pyrenees and surrounding areas, including parts of what would become Navarre. The Basque culture and language played a crucial role in shaping the identity of the region.

Charlemagne’s Influence
In the early ninth century, Charlemagne, the Frankish king and Holy Roman Emperor, established a presence in the Pyrenees and conducted campaigns against the Umayyad Caliphate. During these campaigns, Charlemagne formed alliances with local Basque leaders, including those in the Kingdom of Pamplona.

Establishment of the Kingdom of Navarre
It was under the leadership of King Iñigo Arista (Íñigo Íñiguez Arista) that the Kingdom of Pamplona began to take shape as a separate political entity. In 824 AD, he was crowned as the first King of Pamplona, marking the formal establishment of the kingdom. This event is considered the starting point of Navarre’s independent history.

In the following centuries, the Kingdom of Pamplona/Navarre faced various challenges, including conflicts with neighboring Christian and Muslim realms. The kingdom expanded its territories and influence, at times incorporating parts of neighboring regions such as Aragon.

During this period, the Christianization of Navarre took place, with the spread of Christianity playing a pivotal role in the region’s culture and governance.

Tandareis and Flordibel | Der Pleier, 1240-1270
Alliterative Morte Arthure | c. 1400