la Reconquista the Reconquest of Spain; (of Spain)
The term Reconquista refers to the eight centuries during which the Christian kings of the Spanish kingdoms gradually reclaimed their country from the Moors, who had invaded the Iberian Peninsula in 711. It is generally accepted that the reconquest began in 718 with the Christian victory at Covadonga in Asturias, and ended in 1492, when Ferdinand and Isabella, the Reyes Católicos, retook Granada, the last Muslim stronghold. In the intervening centuries there had been a great deal of contact and overlap between the two cultures. Christians living under Arab rule were called mozárabes, while mudéjares were practising Muslims living under Christian rule. In contrast with the pluralistic society that had existed under the Arabs, the final years of the Reconquista were a time of great intolerance, with Arabs and Jews being forcibly converted to Christianity, after which they were known as conversos. Those refusing to be converted were expelled in 1492.