Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia


Espaigne, Espaingne, Espagne, Spayn, Spayne, Spyan

Spain is a country located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula.

In the chronicles, Spain is under Roman control, and its king, Alifatima or Meodras, joins Lucius in the war against Arthur. In Wolfram’s Parzival, it is ruled by King Kaylet. Der Pleier, in Tandareis and Flordibel, names Spain as one of Arthur’s allies. In Claris et Laris, Spain is ruled by Savari and then Sir Claris.

Its most important role comes in the Icelandic Saga af Tristram ok Ísodd, where it is named as Tristan’s homeland. It’s king, Hlöòvir, was slain during an invasion. Tristan’s grandfather, Patrocles, took control, but was soon killed, leaving it to Kalegras, Tristan’s father. Kalegras also died, and Tristan’s foster-father, Biríng, took the throne. Biríng was expelled by a pirate king named Turnes. Eventually, Tristan re-conquered it and served as king until his death.

In Malory, Sir Urre of Hungary fought and killed Sir Alpheus in a tournament held in Spain.

Spain | 3rd century BC to 9th century AD

Pre-Roman Period
Before the Roman conquest, the Iberian Peninsula was inhabited by various indigenous peoples, including Iberians, Celts, and others.

Roman Conquest | 3rd – 2nd century BC
The Roman Republic began its conquest of the Iberian Peninsula in the third century BC, and by the second century BC, most of the region was under Roman control. The Romans established cities, roads, and infrastructure, and Latin became the dominant language.

Roman Hispania | 2nd century BC – 5th century AD
The Iberian Peninsula was part of the Roman Empire, divided into administrative regions such as Hispania Citerior and Hispania Ulterior. Hispania became a prosperous part of the Roman Empire, contributing to its economy and culture.

Germanic Invasions | 5th century
With the decline of the Western Roman Empire in the fifth century, Germanic tribes, particularly the Vandals, Suebi, and Alans, invaded the Iberian Peninsula. The Visigoths, another Germanic tribe, established a kingdom in parts of the Iberian Peninsula.

Visigothic Kingdom | 5th – 8th centuries
The Visigothic Kingdom, with its capital at Toledo, emerged as the dominant power in the Iberian Peninsula. The Visigothic period was marked by internal strife, including religious conflicts between Arianism and Catholicism.

Islamic Conquest | 711 – 718
In 711, Muslim forces, led by Tariq ibn Ziyad, defeated the Visigothic king at the Battle of Guadalete. The Muslims rapidly conquered most of the Iberian Peninsula, leading to the establishment of the Umayyad Caliphate of Cordoba.

Islamic Al-Andalus | 8th – 15th centuries
Al-Andalus, the Islamic rule in the Iberian Peninsula, became a center of learning, culture, and scientific advancements. The region experienced periods of political fragmentation, with various taifas (small kingdoms) emerging.

Reconquista | 8th – 15th centuries
The Reconquista was a long process of Christian reconquest that began in the eighth century and continued for centuries. Christian kingdoms such as Asturias, Léon, Castile, and Aragon gradually expanded southward, reclaiming territory from Islamic rule.

Emergence of Christian Kingdoms | 9th – 15th centuries
Christian kingdoms consolidated power during the Reconquista, with significant victories such as the capture of Toledo in 1085 and the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa in 1212. The marriage of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile in 1469 united their realms, setting the stage for the formation of modern Spain.

See also
Compostela | The Legend of King Arthur

Historia Regum Britanniae | Geoffrey of Monmouth, c. 1138
Roman de Brut | Wace, c. 1155
Brut | Layamon, late 12th century to mid-13th century
Vulgate Merlin | 1220-1235
Tandareis and Flordibel | Der Pleier, 1240-1270
Claris et Laris | 1268
Saga af Tristram ok Isodd | 14th century
Le Morte Darthur | Sir Thomas Malory, 1469-1470