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Queen Isabella I of Castile

A research project on the Renaissance figure Queen Isabella I of Castile.
by

Dia Tomada

on 31 May 2011

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Transcript of Queen Isabella I of Castile

Queen Isabella I Early Years Princess Isabella was born on April 22, 1451 in Madrigal de las Atlas Torres to John II of Castile, and Isabella of Portugal.
After her father's death in 1454 Isabella's older half brother Enruque (Henry) became King Henry IV, so Isabella, her younger brother Alfonso, and her mother left for Arevalo. There they lived in poor conditions and Isabella of Portugal eventually began to lose her mind. Isabella and her younger brother were taken from their mother's care and went to live with King Henry (her older brother) in Segovia. From an early age, Isabella was taught in lessons of extreme piety and religion. Her education was reading, spelling, mathmatics, grammar, art, dancing, embroidering, chess and music; she lived a relaxed life style. A Political Marriage At the age of 10, Isabella was arranged to be married to Charles IV of Navarre, but it was a very big controversy because Charles was almost 40 at the time. King John II was outraged, because he believed that Isabella was destined for his other son, Ferdinand. He threw Charles in prison for plotting against his own father; the marraige was then called off. Then, again in 1464, Isabella was to be married to Alfonso V of Portugal, King Henry's brother in law. Although it would bring political advantage, Isabella refused to marry him. #2 #1 When a civil war broke out, claiming that King Henry couldn't act as sovereign, the King desperatly needed to find peace. Isabella was to be betrothed to Pedro Giron, who was Maestre de Calatrava and brother to the King’s favorite Don Juan Pacheco. To pay him back, the Master would pay the impoverished a large sum of money into the royal treasury. Although Henry agreed to the marraige, Isabella was disgusted and prayed for it to be cancelled. Her wish came true when Don Pedro fell ill and died on his way to see her. #3 Henry finally regognized her as heir to the thrown on September 19th, 1468. He agreed that she wouldn't have to marry against her will, but must have his consent first. The king went against his promise and tried to get Isabella to marry Alfonso V of Porutugal, but she refused and made a secret promise to Ferdinand of Aragon . He was her first betroth and cousin. #4 King Henry decided once again to try to marry Isabella, but she refused, all the while she was planning with John II of Aragon for her marraige to his son. On 19th of October 1469
the marraige between King Ferdinand of Aragon and Queen Isabella finally happened. Appearance and Personality Isabella was a short girl, but still thick. She had blue eyes, auburn red hair, and a fair complexion. She was extremely religious and her Catholic faith influenced her most in life. Others thought of Isabella as a wise yet strong woman, who was truthful and honest. Family Life Together, Isabella and Ferdinand had 6 children; 4 daughters and 2 sons (named Isabella, John, Joanna, Maria, Catherine, Peter). Unfortunately, Isabelle went through many hardships in her later life, one being the death of her son Peter at an early age, and the miscarriage of his wife. Her daughter Isabella and her son Miguel also passed who would have been able to unite the kingdoms of the Catholic Monarchs with Portugal. Another event that distressed Isabella was when her daughter Joanna went insane and the sadness of Catherine after her husband’s death; leading her to wear black for the rest of her life. Although Isabella was hurt by these occurrences she always understood them due to her strong spirituality, and she met these unfortunate events with grace. Queen Isabella, during her reign, realized the importance of restoring Spains wealth. Another thing that Isabella believed was very important was a good education. By age thirty she was fluent in Latin and encouraged scholars to educate and set up schools. She was a patron of the arts, collecting and admiring many paintings and sculptures. Queen Isabella ruling years was the height of Spain's glory, bringing great wealth and power. She passed away in 1506 (age 55), leaving her beloved husband Ferdinand to rule for 12 more years. Isabella left a great mark on Spain's unique history, being remembered for the kind soul and loving ruler she was. Humanist Beliefs Painful Occurances Sponsoring A Voyage A Remembered Ruler She decided that effective measures needed to be taken in order for the citizens in Spain to have confidence in the throne’s financial handling. Queen Isabella put a monopoly on all mints and took control of all money being made in them. Spain was back in financial order. Religous Monarchs Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand were given a special title: Catholic Monarchs. Together, at the end of the Reconquista, they had only Granada to conquer. Once they did in 1492, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella thought that a religiously unified nation would help strengthen Spain.
They took over the Spanish Inquisition and decided to challenge anyone that didn’t follow the Catholic religion. Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand believed that in order to follow God’s word, they must expel all Jews and Muslims. This shows their dedication and hunger for power and religion. Their decisions affect Spain, even today as 2% identify themselves as another religion aside from Catholic, and 22% being no religion, that still leaves 73% Catholics. In 1492, Queen Isabella and Ferdinand decided
to sponsor Christopher Columbus on his journey to
discover a trade route to Asia. Both of the monarchs
knew that the expedition was a risk, but if Columbus
succeeded in finding the route it would restore
Spain's wealth after spending it all in war. Allowing
Christopher Columbus to set out on this voyage showed
how much faith Isabella had in him and what she was willing
to do in order to help Spain.
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