Alfonso X, the Cortes and Government in Medieval Spain: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Alfonso X, the Cortes and Government in Medieval Spain

1st Edition

By Joseph F. O'Callaghan


324 pages

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Hardback: 9780860786924
pub: 1998-03-28
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These studies, written over a period of nearly thirty years, deal with two major themes: the reign of Alfonso X el Sabio (1252-84), and the development of the cortes of Castile-León, a characteristic example of the emergence of European representative parliamentary institutions. An introductory study on the integration of medieval Spain into western Europe in the late 11th century is followed by studies of Alfonso X’s overall achievement, his innovations in the law and taxation, his relations with the church and the nobility, and the importance of the Cantigas de Santa Maria as an historical source for his reign. Seven other studies trace the origins and mature growth of the cortes from the late 12th century to the middle of the 14th, with particular attention to the documentary history of the institution.


'No historian has better captured the spirit of the Alfonsine age than has Joseph F. O'Callaghan…This collection of essays…will be welcomed by both medievalists and generalists alike…The deep historical erudition embedded in the extremely accessible style of these works marks O'Callaghan as one of the great historians of the Iberian Middle Ages in the twentieth century.' Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, no. 3, July 2000

Table of Contents

Contents: The integration of Christian Spain into Europe: the role of Alfonso VI of León-Castile; Image and reality: the king creates his kingdom; On the promulgation of the Espéculo and the Fuero Real; The Cortes and royal taxation during the reign of Alfonso X of Castile; Paths to ruin: the economic and financial policies of Alfonso the Learned; Alfonso X and the Castilian Church; Kings and lords in conflict in late 13th-century Castile and Aragón; The Cantigas de Santa Maria as an historical source: two examples; The beginnings of the Cortes of León-Castile; Una nota sobre las llamadas Cortes de Benavente; Las Cortes de Castilla y León (1230-1350); The ecclesiastical estate in the Cortes of León Castile,1252-1350; Las Cortes de Fernando IV: cuadernos inéditos de Valladolid 1300 y Burgos 1308; Catálogo de los cuadernos de las Cortes de Castilla y León 1252-1348; Las Cortes de Valladolid-Tordesillas de 1401: una carta de los Procuradores de Burgos; Index.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.

The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.

Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource. 

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General