Special Sub-Topic: Isabella I of Castile
|Who were my parents?|
John II of Castile and Isabel of Portugal. John II of Castile was the father of Isabella who was born by his second marriage, to Isabel of Portugal. Henry IV was her half brother whose mother was Maria of Aragon. Isabel, Princess of Asturias, was Queen Isabella's eldest daughter.
|My brother Henry IV (also known as Enrique in Spain) was not very pleased about my marriage to someone who was in line for his own kingdom. Who was the one I married?|
Ferdinand II of Aragon. Her brother wanted her to marry Alfonso V and Pedro Giron since he thought it will be easier to control Isabella, who was the heir. Henry IV had a daughter Juana but there were some problems if Henry was the father of Juana since her mother was having an affair. So the Castilian throne was passed to his sister not his offspring.
But the plan was for Isabella to marry Alfonso, and for Juana marry to his son so that Juana could get the throne by marriage. Isabella did not agree and wanted to marry Ferdinand then the heir to Aragon because she thought he was the potential husband. Henry IV did not agree but the little sister escaped to marry him. With their marriage they both ruled a newly united Spain.
|How long was my reign?|
29 years. She reigned from December 10, 1474 till November 26, 1504, so she almost reigned for 30 years.
|I loved my husband Ferdinand II of Aragon. Did he also love me and was he faithful in our marriage?|
n. Ferdinand acquired a couple of mistresses and, of course, fathered illegitmate children.
|I had five children that survived to adulthood but not all of my children met with a happy end. My only son died early so my daugthers were the remaining heirs. Which daughter of mine became the wife of a certain famous English king?|
Catherine of Aragon. Catherine of Aragon was the first wife of Henry VIII. Their union did not produce the son Henry wanted which led to their divorce/annulment. Maria and Joanna were daughters of Isabel, while Eleanor was a much earlier princess of Castile (1241-1290) who married the English King Edward I.
|I had another daugther who was the ancestor of many Spanish monarchs and the Holy Roman Empire but she was also said to be insane. Who was that ill-fated daugther of mine?|
Joanna of Castile. Joanna the Mad was considered insane because she still took care of her husband after he had died and had a couple of 'episodes'. Some modern historians think her insanity was the result of clinical depression following the death of her husband. However, she was the mother of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, who inherited a vast array of states, including Austria, Bohemia, Burgundy and of course Spain.
Isabel of Portugal was the mother of Isabel of Castile but was also considered insane. There was a lot of insanity in following generations of the Spanish royal family and it is sometimes said it started with her.
Maria was a daugther of Isabel but did not share the sad fate of her siblings. Blanche of Castile was a different person and lived long before Isabella's time.
|I sent a certain man to go to an expedition. He did not go to India but found another land that brought Spain many riches. Who was it?|
Christopher Columbus. It was Isabella that funded Columbus's voyage. Without her, who would have colonized the Americas? Isabella was called "the mother of the Americas".
|When were the Jews expelled from Spain?|
1492. In the later Middle Ages, and esepcially from 1391 onwards, Jews and Muslims in Spain were often ordered to convert to Christianity. However, even if they converted they were not accepted as true Christians, either. Instead, they were called 'Converts' or 'New Christians' and later attracted the attention of the Inquisition. It was also the same year Columbus went to America.
|One of my last wishes was to protect the American Indians from abuse by Spanish colonists.|
t. That was one of her last wishes before her death in 1504.
|I was the first woman to be in (or on)one of these. Which was it?|
A US coin. It was in 1893, on a coin celebrating the 400th anniversary of Columbus's voyage. In that same year she was also the first woman to appear on a comemmorative postage stamp.
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