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Örjan Martinsson

The Iberian Peninsula

When the Roman Empire collapsed the Visigoths created a kingdom of their own on the Iberian Peninsula. The Arabs conquered that kingdom in the beginning of the 8th century but resistance against the Muslim invaders continued in the north and several Christian petty kingdoms were created. These kingdoms were often merged together to form larger kingdoms while they also re-conquered the lands controlled by the Muslims (the Reconquista). Aragon and Castile were the most important kingdoms and when they were united 1479 by Isabel and Fernando the Kingdom of Spain was created. In 1492 the last Muslim state, Granada, was conquered. Portugal and Navarre were unified with Spain during the 16th century but Portugal regained its independence after a rebellion 1640.