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History and the Historians of Medieval Spain$
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Peter Linehan

Print publication date: 1993

Print ISBN-13: 9780198219453

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198219453.001.0001

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The Catholic Century

The Catholic Century

(p.22) 2 The Catholic Century
History and the Historians of Medieval Spain

Peter Linehan

Oxford University Press

Although King Reccared owed much of the success he had in Catholicizing Spain to his brother Hermenegild's failure to do so earlier, it was to his father, the most remarkable of the Arian kings of Spain, in Thompson's estimation, that he was more indebted. The dynamics of the 7th century, and of every century down to the 14th, involved not the Church but churchmen, not the monarchy and nobility but monarchs and nobles, and, their task, was that of reconciling the elevated style of kingship recently adopted to a political system which had long been based on a fragile network of personal relationships. Spanish historians of the last half-century have been describing the 7th century in the language of 20th-century politics and in attempting to explain it they have regularly approached the task with the example of the contemporary Church in mind.

Keywords:   King Reccared, catholicizing, churchmen, monarch, nobles, kingship, political system

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