"Coexistence" and "crusade," the terms employed in the title of this study, suggest two contrary modes of thought and action and point to the fundamental tension existing in the relations between the religious groups of medieval Iberia. I use "coexistence" here as an approximate translation of the term convivencia (both terms will be used interchangeably throughout this study), a term that Américo Castro coined to describe the more or less peaceful "living together" of and cultural interchange between Christians, Muslims, and Jews in the Christian kingdoms of medieval Spain. The crusade, a holy war aimed at the conquest of territories under the control of the ideological enemy, or "infidel," is manifest in Iberian history in the centuries-long Christian reconquista of the greater part of the peninsula from the Muslims who had conquered it in the eighth century. Although coexistence and crusade appear to concern distinct aspects of Christian-Muslim relations—the former being descriptive of the benign interaction of religious groups within the Spanish kingdoms, and the latter of the bellicose relations of those kingdoms with Islamic polities—neither one lacked elements that might be considered more characteristic: of the other. In other words, the history of Christian-Muslim relations in medieval Spain presents the historian with a variety of situations on both the domestic and international fronts for which neither "peaceful coexistence" nor "fanatical belligerence" are accurately descriptive.
While the Christian reconquista appears to have been a perpetual crusade against the Muslims of al-Andalus, warfare with Islam was actually more intermittent than constant. This was especially the case
during the years between the midthirteenth century, by which time Aragon and Castile had made their major territorial acquisitions in Valencia, Murcia, and Andalusia, and the final push for the conquest of the sultanate of Granada (1482–1492). Realpolitik and commercial interests often prevailed over crusading fervor. Thus Christian kings and Muslim sultans not infrequently formed alliances against their respective coreligionists in an attempt to maintain a balance of power in the western Mediterranean. During periods of peace Christian and Islamic states engaged in commerce and merchants from both sides freely crossed the frontier to conduct their business. During the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries (until 1482) in particular, the Christian kingdoms were usually too involved in their own conflicts and civil wars to devote much energy to the struggle against Islam. In sum, the Spanish crusade against Islam, although always existent at least as a potentiality, was often far more apparent than real, and forms of international Muslim-Christian coexistence were not at all unusual.
It was, of course, the Islamic jihad[*] (holy war) and the Christian crusade that gave rise to medieval Iberia's religiously plural societies. Because the Muslim and Christian conquerors did not expel, annihilate, or forcibly convert the subject populations, some form of coexistence or modus vivendi between the conquerors and the "infidel" conquered was necessary. Muslim and Christian rulers each dealt with the subject populations in accordance with theological considerations, political and economic pragmatism, and historical precedent.
The treatment of Christian and Jewish minorities in Islamic Spain was governed by the dhimmah contract, which accorded protection to the adherents of those religions with a revealed scripture considered by Muslims to be divinely inspired. In return for religious freedom and communal autonomy, the dhimmi s[*] (as the beneficiaries of the dhimmah contract were called) had to acknowledge the domination of Islam, materially expressed in the payment of the jizyah or special poll tax. The dhimmah contract had its Qur'anic[*] (Koranic) foundation in the text (IX: 24): "Fight those who do not believe ... until they pay the jizyah ." In other words, the jihad was to cease once the unbelievers had been subjected to Islamic rule. Given the vast populations of non-Muslims the Muslim conquerors incorporated within their empire, their policy could hardly have been otherwise. While Islamic law afforded the dhimmi s security, it nevertheless subjected them to civil and legal disabilities and excluded them, theoretically at least, from positions of political power. Regarding the protection of the dhimmi s, the letter of the law was not always followed, as evinced in the Almohad persecution of Mozarabic Christians and Jews. Still, such instances were a relatively rare exception to the rule of harmonious coexistence in al-Andalus.
In Christian Spain the legal structures governing the relations of the Christian majority with the Jewish and Muslim minorities were sufficiently similar to the dhimmah contract in their granting of freedom of worship and autonomy to each religious community to suggest that Christian rulers borrowed the dhimmah model and adapted it to Christian norms. However, there was a crucial difference between the Christian and Islamic systems. Whereas the dhimmah contract was sanctioned by revelation and was therefore universally applicable and essentially stable, the Christian system was based primarily on a series of surrender treaties and compacts concluded between Christian monarchs and individual minority communities, and was consequently more subject to change. Robert Burns points out that in one sense the new Christian model was an advancement of its dhimmah antecedent, because it was "the product of a community's rational manipulation of experience rather than ... application or acceptance of a religious structure." Although it is true that the compacts' initial formulations obeyed political and economic realities and at times were later modified in favor of the minority communities, the greater instability inherent in the Christian system—where minority privileges could be withdrawn by royal fiat in response to social, economic, and political pressures—more often than not boded ill for the minorities and resulted in the steady erosion of their security.
Thus, in both Islamic and Christian societies there existed a form of institutionalized tolerance of religious minorities. Yet because this tolerance was institutional, an artificial governmental creation, it by no means guaranteed a harmonious intermingling of religious groups. Even though the state of war between Muslims and Christians was ended with conquest and the conclusion of surrender treaties, the religious animosity that, along with political and economic concerns, had motivated the military conquests was not immediately or ever completely extinguished. Owing to the continual, although sporadic, confrontation between Spain's Christian kingdoms and their Islamic adversaries—however much this was tempered by commercial treaties and political alliances—that fundamental odium and mistrust felt for the ideological enemy, so necessary for the mobilization of crusade and jihad[*] , was sustained within the religiously plural societies despite the quotidian contact between Muslims and Christians. This tension, usually subliminal, occasionally gave rise to overt expressions of hostility, either official—as in the expulsions of the Mozarabic Christians by the Almohads and the Moriscos by the Christian authorities, both minorities being politically suspect—or popular—as in the anti-Muslim riots in Valencia in the 1270s or in 1455. Moreover, the very protection and autonomy granted to minority communities was also designed to isolate them from the
majority, rendering each group strange to the other and fostering mutual aversion. Therefore, intrinsic to the institutional forms structuring Iberian Christian—Muslim—Jewish coexistence was a latent ideological antagonism. It follows that the concept of convivencia as peaceful coexistence must be modified to include this ever-present potentiality for religious and ethnic violence. Only then can convivencia have any applicability as a term descriptive of the reality of medieval Spain's plural societies.
The present study focuses on the Muslim minority of the kingdom of Valencia during the reign of Fernando II (1479–1516), some 240 years after that kingdom was conquered from Islam by Jaime I of Aragon. The decision to study the Valencian Mudejars (Muslims living under Christian rule) of this era originated in a desire to comprehend more fully the reasons for the breakdown of convivencia , which for the most part occurred under the Catholic Monarchs, Fernando and his wife, Isabel I of Castile. It was the Monarchs who set about taking care of Spain's "Jewish problem," first by establishing a national Inquisition (1478–1483) intended to eradicate from Christian society those converts from Judaism (Conversos) still adhering to their ancestral faith, and then by expelling the Jews from all of Spain (1492) as a means of preventing them from further contaminating the Conversos. In the same year that the expulsion was ordered Fernando and Isabel also completed the conquest of the sultanate of Granada, the last Islamic polity on Iberian soil. After some ten years of living under Castilian rule as Mudejars, the Muslims of Granada were given the choice of baptism or expulsion, as were the Mudejars of Isabel's Castile (1502). By the end of Fernando's reign only the Muslims living in the lands of the Crown of Aragon still retained their dissident religious status.
While the Jews and Conversos, and the Muslims of Granada and Castile, have all received some treatment by historians, the Mudejars of the Crown of Aragon curiously have been left untouched. Yet it would seem that a full understanding of the religious policy of the Catholic Monarchs, on whose shoulders the responsibility for the dissolution of convivencia must be placed, demands consideration of the situation of those minorities who, with royal sanction, remained non-Christian as well as that of those who by force or otherwise became members of the Catholic Church. Tidy explanations of the Monarchs' policy as a drive for the religious unity of the Spanish State remain untenable as long as Fernando's treatment of his own Muslim subjects remains unexplored. Efforts to sweep the question of Aragon's Muslims under the rug by pointing out the probable seigneurial resistance to any royal plans for their conversion, while accurate to the extent that the nobles indeed would have resisted had any such plans existed, nevertheless are not
fully convincing. For it is evident in Fernando's imposition of the Inquisition on all his kingdoms, against considerable local resistance, that seigneurial complaints would not have deterred him had the religious unity of Aragon and Castile been his intention.
Thus far, precious little work has been done on the Mudejars of the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries, particularly on the question of royal policy toward them. There are, however, the valuable studies of Miguel Gual Camarena and Leopoldo Piles on the Mudejars of the kingdom of Valencia and that of Francisco Macho y Ortega on their Aragonese counterparts. Although these studies provide important information on the internal organization of the Muslim aljamas (communities), the Muslims' economic life, and their taxation by the Crown, they do little to elucidate the vicissitudes of royal policy and do not take into account the changing political, social, and economic conditions that might have affected the Mudejars' situation. For the Castilian Mudejars we have the useful work of Miguel Angel Ladero Quesada, which includes 152 edited documents concerning the Muslims of Granada and Castile from 1492 to 1503. These documents shed valuable light on the views of the principal Christian actors in the drama: Isabel, Fernando, Cardinal Francisco Jiménez de Cisneros, and Hernando de Talavera, the first archbishop of Granada. However, Ladero's historical introduction to the documents does little to explain why the Monarchs acted as they did and attempts rather 'unsuccessfully to absolve Isabel of the charge of having forced the Granadan Muslims to receive baptism. Most important, Ladero fails to make the essential connection between the Monarchs' Jewish policy and their Mudejar policy, both of which were rooted in the same concerns.
Most analyses of the Monarchs' religious policy have centered on their treatment of the Jews, the Inquisition, and the expulsion. Various hypotheses concerning the Monarchs' motives in expelling the Jews have been advanced. Stephen Haliczer has suggested that the powerful Converso elite, who, he maintains, controlled the urban governments of Castile, pressured the Monarchs into expelling the Jews in order to defuse Inquisitorial suspicions about their own contacts with Jews. Henry Kamen has proposed that the Castilian nobility was behind the expulsion. Such explanations, whatever usefulness they might have for an understanding of Castilian society, ultimately fail because they ignore Fernando's priorities in the Crown of Aragon and thereby suggest the unlikely scenario of one or another Castilian social group dictating to the king the policy he would follow in his own realms. Others, looking at Spain as a whole, have argued that it was Reason of State that moved the Monarchs to establish the Inquisition and expel the Jews; that is, in their drive toward a centralized monarchy they could not brook the
existence of dissident groups. This last argument appears especially tenuous when one considers the simple fact that Fernando permitted the Mudejars of Aragon to remain Muslims. The consensus among most historians now seems to be that in expelling the Jews, Fernando and Isabel were motivated mainly by religious concerns, that is, by the concerns they themselves enunciated in the edict of expulsion—to prevent the Jews from contaminating the Christian faith of the Conversos. Maurice Kriegel has presented this viewpoint most convincingly while effectively refuting other opinions.
However, if religious concerns, or the goal of religious unity, motivated the Monarchs, how can we explain the glaring exception of Aragon's Mudejars? Perhaps the greatest stumbling block to finding a consistent thread in the Monarchs' minority policy is the assumption that this policy, with its various conversions and expulsions, was preconceived, a fixed idea in the minds of Fernando and Isabel that needed only to be acted upon. While this may have been true of their Jewish policy—for there was a compelling logic in the movement from the establishment of the Inquisition to the expulsion, especially considering the clear role of the Inquisitors in the decision to decree the expulsion—it was not the case with respect to their Mudejar policy. As will be demonstrated in the first chapter of this study, Fernando had every intention of maintaining Mudejarism in his kingdom, and the same probably can be said of Isabel in Castile. The Mudejar "policy" that evolved out of the events of 1499–1501 was really not a policy at all but a somewhat confused reaction to the rebellions in the Albaicín and the Alpujarras and their aftermath. The decision to convert or expel the Muslims of Granada and Castile was, indeed, based on religious concerns—namely, on a fear that the Muslims might contaminate those Muslims who had converted to Christianity in the course of the rebellions. This was not a decision designed to create religious unity in the Spanish State (a concept in itself somewhat questionable) but a measure meant to prevent the corruption of the beliefs of the Monarchs' Christian subjects. In all of this Fernando's uneasiness contrasts rather markedly with Isabel's apparent satisfaction, as does his determination to maintain Mudejarism in Aragon with his acquiescence to Isabel's methods and measures in Castile. This study will put into relief the differences between Fernando and Isabel on the question of the religious minorities.
Methodological considerations have determined the chronological and geographic scope of this study. I thought it important to begin my archival research with the year 1479, the commencement of Fernando's reign, for it was in the early years of the reign that the monarch had to confirm or withdraw the privileges granted to Muslim aljamas by his predecessors. On the basis of such confirmations or revocations of
privileges one can both assess the extent to which the king acted in accordance with tradition and conclude whether he intended significant modifications of the Mudejars' status. The terminal date for my research of 1503 was chosen because previous to 12 February 1502 the fate of the Granadan and Castilian Mudejars had not yet been decided. If this study is to have any comparative value vis-à-vis the Monarchs' differential treatment of the Mudejars in Castile and Aragon, then Fernando's distinct policy toward his own Muslim subjects must be traced at least until the time of the conversion of Isabel's Castilian and Granadan subjects.
The weightiest consideration in my decision to focus on the Valencian Mudejars was the simple fact that the kingdom of Valencia had the largest Muslim population—30 percent of the total, as compared to 20 percent for Aragon and less than 2 percent for Catalonia. Moreover, because of Valencia's geographic position—located on the Mediterranean coast and much closer to Granada and North Africa than Aragon—the situation of the kingdom's Muslims was much more affected by the Crown of Aragon's relations with Islamic states, a factor that seems to lend their story greater interest. Finally, it was events in the kingdom of Valencia—namely, the revolt of the Germanías with its attendant anti-Muslim violence—that led Carlos I to command the conversion of the Crown of Aragon's Muslim subjects. Hence, it was Valencia that would weigh most heavily in Fernando's formulation of a Mudejar policy and in the determination of the Muslims' ultimate fate.
The historian of the Mudejars under Fernando II can hardly ignore the substantial body of scholarship on the Moriscos (Muslim converts to Christianity), whose story in Valencia begins in 1525. Certainly the Moriscos' situation was in some respects a continuation of that of the Mudejars, so that the findings of Morisco scholarship can be utilized to shed light on Mudejar life in certain areas, such as demography (taking into account the postconversion migration from urban areas to rural seigneuries), the relationship of Muslim vassals to Christian lords (although the bargaining position of the Morisco vassal worsened), the role of the faqih[*] (jurist) in Muslim community life, and the question of the Muslims' language. Nevertheless, great caution must be exercised in the application of the conclusions of Morisco studies. One must be wary of equating the Mudejars' status with that of the Moriscos and should take into account the modifications of the Muslims' position that conversion entailed. For instance, in the case of the Mudejars the mechanisms-for acculturation were largely informal, whereas in the case of the Moriscos acculturation and assimilation were formal programs imposed from above by the royal and ecclesiastical authorities. In order to maintain their Islamic culture intact, the Moriscos were forced to take a more
vehement anti-Christian stand both culturally and socially. The establishment of Catholicism as the norm governing cultural and social behavior gave the Old Christians (Christians without Muslim or Jewish ancestry) certain expectations as to how the Moriscos should conduct themselves. Failure to meet the Old Christians' expectations meant for the Moriscos social ostracism and Inquisitorial investigation. The Mudejars had been a social and religious minority; the Moriscos formed a marginal society, anomalous and anachronistic. The fundamental shift from a plural society, in which Islam was granted legal recognition and was an accustomed fixture on the social landscape, to a unitary Catholic society demanding conformity radically altered the state of Muslim—Christian relations. To see the particularly pointed hostility between Moriscos and Old Christians as indicative of the state of affairs before the conversion is to attach to the modus vivendi arrived at by Muslims and Christians after more than two centuries of coexistence the characteristics of a plural society rudely distorted.
In this study I have tried not to go over ground already expertly plowed by other scholars. Thus I have not treated in any detail matters such as the thirteenth-century Mudejar treaties, which can be found in Fr. Burns's works, or the basic Mudejar rights, which receive ample treatment in John Boswell's work. However, a certain amount of repetition is unavoidable. Attention must be given to the organization of aliama government and to the taxation of the Mudejars, questions that are fundamental to an understanding of Mudejar life. And, as will be seen in chapters 3 and 4, even in areas such as these there was change from one century to the next, so that a careful reconsideration has considerable value. Likewise, chapter 5, which treats the operation of Islamic and Christian legal systems long in place, delineates more clearly than was hitherto possible how the two systems divided judicial labor and how the Muslims pursued justice in Christian courts.
Owing to the nature of the documentation available in the Archivo del Reino de Valencia, I have been able to explore some areas of Mudejar life that have been left largely untouched by scholars working in earlier centuries. By analyzing the Mudejars' role in the regional economy and their economic interaction with Christians of all walks of life, I have attempted to show that the economic basis for convivencia consisted of far more than the seigneurial exploitation of the Muslim masses. Moving further still from the model of colonial exploitation, I suggest how some Mudejars were able to adapt to fifteenth-century conditions and prosper by taking advantage of increased opportunities. I question the assumption of a continuous decline in the Mudejars' economic position since the thirteenth century and attempt to dispel
the notion that fifteenth-century Mudejars and sixteenth-century Moriscos lived under the same material conditions.
The documentation has also made it possible for me to handle to some extent the more elusive problem of Mudejar family structure and social mores. In the final chapter I suggest that these structural factors were crucial for the Mudejars' maintenance of a Muslim identity and group cohesiveness. Extremely helpful in dealing with these matters was the work of Thomas F. Glick, who has shown how factors such as social structure and language act as cultural boundary-maintaining mechanisms that slow or impede the process of acculturation. Also, Pierre Guichard's study of the social structures of the Muslims of al-Andalus was essential for furthering my understanding of the behavior of the Mudejars.
As has been suggested above, the reign of Fernando and Isabel presents special problems of its own. Not the least of these is how the Catholic Monarchs would treat their Muslim subjects while Aragon and Castile were engaged in crusades against the sultanates of Granada and North Africa and with the Ottoman Turks looming menacingly on the eastern horizon. Not since the thirteenth century did the crusade against Islam play such an important role in the history of the Spanish kingdoms. What this crusade would mean for the survival of Muslim-Christian coexistence in Aragon is one of the questions this study will attempt to answer.