Faculty Mentor

Elizabeth Swedo




Increasing religious intolerance in Castile resulted in the expulsion of Muslims in 1502. However, just 50 years earlier Castile was known as one of the most religiously tolerant Christian kingdoms of Europe. Scholars have debated the reasons for the rapid shift in royal religious policy. But rather than asking why, here it is questioned how Castilian royalty used this Anti-Muslim shift to consolidate their power. This study focuses on primary source documents such as the “Capitulations of Granada” to answer this question. Created in December 1491, the Capitulations were a collection of decrees that guaranteed the protection of Muslims and their traditions following the surrender of the Muslim kingdom of Granada to the Christian kingdoms of Castile and Aragon. Detailed analysis of this document illustrates that a sudden negative shift towards Muslims did occur but asserts that this shift was deliberately shaped by the Castilian monarchy for political gain.






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