Moors (Lat. Marui, meaning dark; Span. Moros), the original designation of the inhabitants of the ancient Mauritania or Morocco (q.v). The Arabs, who entered and conquered this country in the 7th century, denominated the native population Moghrebins, i.e., "Westerners," or "men of the West," but they called themselves Berbers, while to the Europeans they were known as Moors. The Arabic language, customs, and manners soon came to prevail among the Berbers; and the Arab conquerors, who gave them the Mohammedan faith, freely amalgamating with them, their character was totally changed, and they became hardly distinguishable from their conquerors; and under Moors we now generally understand the mixed races that arose in the 7th century, when the Saracens wrested North Africa from the Byzantine empire, and incorporated it with the caliphate of Damascus. The Moors were distinguished by the warlike spirit which was then common among the Mohammedan nations, and at an early period began to make inroads for plunder into Spain. A battle with the Visigoths of that country took place in A.D. 672, in which they were defeated with considerable loss; but an opportunity which favored their designs occurred when, during a rebellion which in A.D. 710 placed Roderic, duke of Cordova, on the Spanish throne, the defeated party called in the aid of the Moors. A force of them, led by Taric, entered in the following year, and at the battle of Xeres de la Frontera, near Cadiz, July 11, 711, the army of the Goths, under king Roderic, was almost entirely destroyed, while the death of Roderic himself, who was killed in the battle, put an end to the dominion of the Goths. Muza, the governor of North Africa, jealous of the success of Taric, now advanced with a new army, and took Cordova and Toledo, and within five years subdued the greater portion of the peninsula to his power. Receiving re-enforcements from Africa, he even crossed the Pyrenees, twenty years later, and advanced as far as Bordeaux and Tours. Here, however, the invaders were defeated by Charles Martel in the battle of Poitiers, and they recrossed the Pyrenees, never to return. The defeat not only drove the Moors from the Continent, but forever after confined them to the Iberian peninsula; and even here the inhabitants of Asturia. Galicia, and the Basques successfully resisted their dominion. Also in the parts in which the African invaders had successfully established themselves, internal divisions, which soon arose among the chiefs, together with insubordination towards the caliph of Africa, often brought them near an overthrow, until after the extinction of the family of the Ommiades, when Abderahman I, the last representative of the Ommiade caliphs, who had escaped from Damascus on the subversion of that dynasty in A.D. 752, brought about the consolidation of the government with the caliphate of Cordova, and annulled its previous dependence on the caiiphate of Damascus. Under this new government order and prosperity revived. Abderahman changed the laws, regulated the administration, built a fleet, and provided for the instruction of the people. His residence was established at Cordova, where he built a magnificent mosque. His successors, and particularly Abderahman III and Alhakem II, followed his example; and under the dynasty of the Ommiades Spain became the equal in civilization and learning of any country in Europe. It seemed as if the Arabs had only been transplanted to Spain to enable them to acquire the high intellectual culture which was unknown in the East. But while they advanced in civilization, they gradually lost the warlike qualities which had enabled them to make their conquest, and the oppressed Spanish Christians came to look forward to the time when they could throw off the yoke and regain their nationality. The flourishing period of the reign of the Ommiades lasted until the 10th century, the whole period covering the brightest page of Moorish history. After holding for 282 years the caliphate of Cordova, the Ommiade family became extinct in 1037 in the person of Hesham III, who, on account of the insubordination of his subjects, retired from the government in 1031, to devote himself to science and literature. With his retirement the caliphate of Cordova also ended; and the territory was divided into a number of little states, the governors erecting themselves into hereditary and independent princes, and they severally wasted their strength in internecine wars, interrupted only occasionally by an alliance for mutual defence when the Christians threatened their very existence. The latter had not in the mean time remained stationary. By A.D. 801 Charlemagne had definitely incorporated the territory north of the Ebro with the Frankish dominions, and the Moors were driven out of Catalonia. They then retained simply the provinces of Leon and Castile. But even there the Arab population was greatly diminishing; and when in 1085 the Castilians succeeded in taking Toledo, and the Tagus became the frontier of Christian Spain, the Arabs clearly saw their dominion seriously threatened, and, for centuries broken up and scattered, now became more united, and finally resolved to call Jussuf, of the family of the Almoravides, who had established a great empire in Africa, to assist them against the king of Castile. Jussuf arrived in 1086 with a numerous army, and promptly defeated the Christians at Zalacca, but was obliged to return to Africa to defend his possessions there. He came back soon afterwards, however, and all the Moors of Spain remained united under his government. After his death, in 1106, a second period of internal ruptures followed. Abdelmumen, chief of the Almohades, a family opposed to the Almoravides, came from Africa with a large army, and, taking Cordova and Granada in 1157, established for a while its supremacy. Whenever the Arabs were at peace with each other, the surrounding Christian princes thought it their duty to attack these enemies of the cross. Unity having been in a measure restored by the Almoravides, the archbishop Martin of Toledo invaded Andalusia in 1194, and laid the country waste; the following year king Alphonso III of Castile sent a challenge to Africa to the governor, Jacob Almansor, who, in return, came to Spain with a large army, and defeated Alphonso, July 19, 1195. Thirty thousand Christians, including the most distinguished Spanish knights, were left slain on the field of battle. Almansor fortunately died soon after, and his successors had neither the spirit nor the means to follow up his advantage. The Christians now perceived the necessity of combined action on their part also, and pope Innocent III caused a crusade to be preached against the Moors, both in Spain and in France. In the wars which ensued the Christians proved successful, and completely routed their adversaries in the battle of Las Naves de Tolosa, on the Sierra Morena, July 16, 1212, and by this result brought about the termination of the rule of the Moors in Spain; so that a tract of land, comprising 430 square miles, in the vicinity of Granada, alone remained free from Christian rule. The Aragonians took Valencia, a part of Murcia, and the Balearic Islands; the Castilians took Estremadura, Cordova, and the remaining part of Murcia; even Granada was compelled in 1246 to surrender to king Ferdinand of Castile. Yet this province retained a sort of independence on account of its position, and its almost completely Moorish population. The position of the Arabs varied greatly in the different conquered provinces; but to the shame of the so-called Christians of the Iberian peninsula be it said that generally it was much worse than had been that of the Christians under the rule of the Moors. The Goths, after the conquest, under Moorish rule, had remained in possession of their lands; their taxes were made no higher than those which rested on the Moors subject to military services; they retained their religion, their worship, their laws, and their judges. The bishops, with their chapters, occupied their former position, and were allowed to call together councils. They were only forbidden building new churches, ringing bells, and having processions. The civil government was intrusted to a civil magistrate appointed by the people, who was to act with the bishop. Lawsuits between Christians were to be adjusted by the cadi according to the Gospel and the Gothic laws, and only disputes between Christians and Arabs were judged by the Koran. The Christians who under these circumstances had endured Mohammedan rule received the name of Mozarabic Christians. SEE MOZARABIC LITURGY. The military classes ever remained entirely distinct, and in constant communication with their brethren at the north, acting secretly as their allies whenever they invaded the Moorish provinces, The Arabs under Christian rule, on the other hand, were in quite different conditions, and even the concessions granted them were seldom conscientiously observed. They were generally allowed to follow their own mode of worship, but often excessive proselytizing zeal created exceptions, and converted the mosques into churches. They were allowed to retain possession of their estates, but were seldom permitted to sell them, or to change their residence. They were suffered to elect their own judges, and only disputes with Christians were decided by Christian judges. They were obliged to pay tithes of all their income to the state, besides the poll-tax levied by their feudal lords. They were forbidden having slaves or Christian servants; but this was the fate only of those who had submitted to the Christians. Those whose cities had resisted and been conquered were all reduced into slavery in its severest form. The master could sell, punish, or kill them at his pleasure, and all their earnings were his by law. They could, however, obtain their freedom by becoming Christians; but in after-times even this was restricted to the case when the master was either a Mohammedan or a Jew. By their conversion the Arabs were indeed endowed with all political rights, but by no means could they attain to the same social position as the old Christians; they were everywhere despised, and could seldom enter into other Christian families. A relapse into Islamism was punished with the greatest severity, the penalty being, according to the circumstances, death by fire, spoliation, and inability to inherit. Occasionally, however, the relations between Moors and Christians were more friendly, especially in the country, where landowners fully appreciated the skill and activity of the Arabs as agriculturists. Among the nobility, the Arab nobles, by their courage and skill, as well as by their learning — much superior to that of their Spanish conquerors — knew also how to command respect.
All the Arab learning, art, industry, and fortune gradually centred in Granada, which succeeded in maintaining its political autonomy until about the end of the 15th century. A small sea-coast province of not over 430 square miles, it arrived — partly owing to its situation, and more particularly to the zeal and industry of its inhabitants — at a degree of prosperity which other and larger countries might well have envied. But its principal glory was the city of Granada, its capital, which in the 14th century counted 200,000 inhabitants. It contained the world-renowned palace of the Alhambra — a sort of fortress in which 40,000 people might find refuge. (See a popular and accurate account in Prime, Ahambra and Kremlin, 1874, 12mo.) Its principal feature is the so-called Lions' Court, built in 1213-38, which is considered as the finest specimen of Moorish architecture. It was the residence of the kings of Granada, which vied in splendor with those of the most favored European monarchs, and where many a Christian prince was entertained with bountiful hospitality. Next in rank to Granada were the sea-towns of Almeria and Malaga, distinguished for their manufacturing and commercial importance as well as for the beauty and richness of their palaces. There the finest kinds of silken fabrics and steel-work were produced as far back as the 12th century, and from thence exported to Italy and to the East. But its very prosperity only increased the greed of the neighboring Christian princes, and especially of Ferdinand and Isabella; and, unfortunately for the Moors, one of their own rulers-the reigning king of Granada, Muley-Abul-Hakem -himself voluntarily broke the peace with Castile by refusing to pay the tribute. At first he haughtily declared that the mint of Granada no longer coined gold, but only steel. A few years afterwards he went so far as to seize on the frontier fortress of Zahara by treachery, and took the whole population as slaves to Granada. In reprisal, a Spanish knight, with a determined band of warriors, stormed the city of Alhama, the summer residence of the king of Granada. The king of Granada himself left for Fez, and died soon after ill battle in the service of another prince, showing a courage which he had not exhibited in the defence of his own country. In the mean time a revolution broke out in Granada, occasioned by the jealousy of the queen against a rival, and resulted in Muley's oldest son being called to the throne, while Muley himself was obliged to retire to Malaga. A younger brother of his, El Zagal (the courageous), having surprised the Christian army in a narrow pass and destroyed it entirely, king Ferdinand now determined to wage war for the extermination of both. He improved this opportune moment of their dissensions, and first marched against Granada with all his forces, and in 1487 besieged Malaga, which was compelled by famine to surrender on the 18th of August. El Zagal, looking upon the fall of Malaga as an omen, surrendered Almeria, and left for Africa. The young king, Abdallah (generally named Boabdil), had promised to submit when Almeria was taken. but the inhabitants of Granada would not hear of submitting; they trusted to the strength of their fortifications, consisting of strong walls and 1030 towers. The summer of 1491 was spent by both armies in single combats, which have been the subject of numerous romances and tales. But Granada was destined to fall — the more after the Christians had erected opposite Granada a rival fortified city, Santa Fe. The king, certain of being unable to resist, began secretly to negotiate with the Spaniards, and the terms of surrender were settled November 25, 1491. The conditions were such as might have satisfied the inhabitants of Granada had they been observed. They were to retain possession of their mosques, and to be allowed to follow their own religious worship; their own laws were to be administered by their own cadis, under the oversight of the Spanish governor; they were to retain their own customs, language, and dress, and to have the free and unlimited use of all their property; those who preferred leaving the country were to be furnished ships to take them to Africa. The taxes to which they would be subjected should not exceed those which they paid under their own government. King Abdallah was to retain his estates, and to administer them under the supervision of the Spanish authorities. The city was on these terms surrendered (January 2, 1492) to the Spaniards, who made a triumphal entry; but shortly after the capitulation the Moors found that they had surrendered their rights to the conquerors, and were in danger of losing much, more than they had granted. The finest houses in Granada were occupied by the Spanish noblemen; a converted Moor (such, according to the terms of surrender, were not to hold any official situation) was made chief alguazil, and the largest mosque was changed into a church. The most zealous members of the Romish Church were advising that the Moors should be made to choose between baptism and banishment. But this unwise counsel did not at first prevail. Count de Tendilla and the archbishop Fernando de Talavera, who were at the time governors of the province, sought by mild treatment to unite the Moors with the Spaniards; the archbishop especially was so successful with them by his kindness that large numbers consented to be baptized by him.
This system of conversion, however, appeared too slow to the fanatical party, and the archbishop of Toledo, cardinal Ximenes (q.v.), obtained from the grand inquisitor an authorization to establish an Inquisition among the Elches (Christians who had embraced Islamism; most of them were baptized Moors), and this gave him the means of gradually monopolizing the work of converting the Moors. He set to work, not only by preaching, but also by bribery, and he was at first so successful that thousands were baptized. But this awakened the opposition of the most earnest believers in Mohammedanism. This opposition Ximenes thought to subdue by imprisonment and other severities against their priests; and, in order to strike at the root, he caused all the copies of the Koran and all Arab works of theology to be seized. It is said that he thus collected 80,000 (?) works. He then caused them to be publicly burned. These proceedings led, as he had expected, to an outbreak, directed chiefly against himself. Count Tendilla and the archbishop of Talavera, however, succeeded in quelling the insurrection by promising that the grievances complained of would be inquired into. A capitulation was drawn up, which needed only the royal sanction. Ximenes, whose conduct had at first been sharply blamed by Isabella, had, however, succeeded in converting both her and the king to his views; and the capitulation, for which count Tendilla had given both his wife and children as hostages, was rejected by the king. A royal edict was even proclaimed leaving the Moors to choose between being baptized and punishment for high-treason. Some 50,000 of the inhabitants of Granada sought peace by submitting to baptism; others sold their possessions and emigrated to Africa. The Moors who became Christians received now the name of Moriscoes. But the manner in which the inhabitants of Granada had been treated led to an insurrection in the mountains of the district of Alpujarras. The energetic measures taken to repress that outbreak seemed at first successful; but an attack, in 1500, on the mountains of Serrena de Bonde, almost entirely inhabited by Moors, proved disastrous to the Spaniards; one of their best generals, Alonso de Aguilar, was killed, and his army destroyed. The Moors, however, were at last obliged to submit. A large number emigrated to Africa; others were baptized, stipulating for nothing of their former rights but their dress, language, and exemption from the Inquisition for forty years. This was granted them, but soon evaded; no tribunal of the Inquisition was, indeed, established at Granada, but that of Cordova extended its jurisdiction over Granada. Nine years later another remnant of Mohammedan Moors were forcibly Christianized in the same manner. and baptized en masse in 1526. In the same year a tribunal of the Inquisition was finally established at Granada, and on the 7th of December a proclamation appeared forbidding the Moors from wearing their national dress, or using their national language and their Arab names. But the very next day the Moors purchased the recall of that decree for a sum of 260,000 ducats; this was subsequently several times renewed. The Moors were also, in spite of the treaties concluded with them, subjected to several heavy taxes; so that, besides paying tithes to the Church, they had to pay tithes to the king, and a tax for breeding silk-worms.
Aside from their outward compulsatory profession of Christianity, which the vexatious treatment they experienced at the hands of the Christians did not tend to make them like any the more, they were at heart firmly attached to the old religion, and grew more attached to it in proportion as they suffered for it. They retained the mosque beside the church, had their alfaki as well as their Romish priests, circumcised their children after they were baptized, celebrated their marriages according to Mohammedan customs, etc. At times this was winked at. Thus in the latter part of the reign of Charles V the Moriscoes were left in peace; Philip II expressly commanded the Inquisition to show great mildness and toleration towards them, and even a papal bull was promulgated to that effect. But when, during the war with the piratical Moors of Barbary, it was found out that the Moriscoes had always remained in communication with their African brethren, they became again the objects of persecution. They were forbidden to carry arms without a special authorization, under a penalty of six years of hard labor in the galleys. This gave rise to numerous insurrections, which finally settled into a war of ambush and assassination, and the government was thereby forced to restore the former more rigorous system. After trying other means, Philip II was finally brought to issue a proclamation (November 13, 1556), in which the use of Arabic either in speaking or writing, that of Arab names, and of the national costume of the Moors, even that of their usual baths, was forbidden them; three years were given them to learn Spanish, and those who after that time should contravene these commands were to be punished, according to circumstances, by imprisonment or banishment. This proclamation, against which the Spanish governor of Granada and many Spanish statesmen (among them the duke of Alba) emphatically protested, was nevertheless enforced by the advice of a cardinal and an archbishop. The first result was an insurrection, organized in secret, with the aid of the Moors of Africa, which broke out in the spring of 1568, and at once assumed the character of a war of extermination. The war continued with various vicissitudes — the Moors rising up again when they were thought to have been thoroughly subjected for several years, until finally, after the assassination of the second leader of the insurgents, Aben-Abi (March 18, 1571), the war ended.
The kingdom of Granada, previously the most populous and richest province of Spain, had now become a desolate desert, with here and there a few bands of Moors supporting themselves by robbery amid the ruins of its former splendor. The greater number of Moors were transplanted into other provinces, where they were strictly watched. The use of the Arabic language or of any article of their national dress, the dancing an Arab dance or playing on an instrument suspected to be of Arab origin, were punished as crimes. Only those Moors more anciently settled in Valencia were allowed a little more liberty. Yet, in spite of oppression and watching, the Moriscoes after a few years began to contemplate again a revolt-the more as Spain was then weakened by her war in the Netherlands, and threatened both by France and England. They opened negotiations with France, and in 1605 a vast conspiracy was organized, relying on the assistance of the French. It was, however, betrayed, and the grand inquisitor now clamored that the Moriscoes should either be sent out of Spain or destroyed by the sword. Although Philip III, who was then on the throne, did not wish to accede to so general a measure, and even the pope declined to favor it, yet, as this step seemed to be the only possible means of securing tranquillity to the state, the king issued a proclamation (August 4, 1609) banishing the Moriscoes of Valencia to Africa. The landed nobility, who foresaw the loss of their best farmers, and the clergy that of their tenants, protested in vain, and grand preparations were made to secure the execution of the edict. A delay was granted the Moors for the regulation of their affairs; they were not allowed to sell their land, and could only take away so much of their personal property as they could carry off themselves. At first the Moors offered to pay enormous sums to obtain the recall of that edict; but afterwards, when they had time to reflect, and saw that nothing was to be done, their sorrow changed to joy; they looked upon their exile as a liberation from slavery, in which they could cast aside their mask of Christianity. The emigration proceeded well at first, the nobility even helping the poor people by purchasing their property at a fair price. But this did not suit the Viceroy, who forbade such purchases being made. The Moors now became again frightened, and those of the south of Valencia, who had not yet emigrated, rose in arms. Many were killed, the others very cruelly treated. The emigration from Murcia and Andalusia succeeded better, most of the Moriscoes from those provinces taking refuge in Fez. Those of Aragon, Castile, and Estremadura were ordered to Navarre, but on the frontiers were informed by the French that they had strict orders not to allow them to penetrate into the country. Exasperated, they either fought their way through or purchased permission to enter. Those of Catalonia were directed to Africa. A small remnant of about 30,000, who had been permitted to stay on exhibiting certificates from their bishops testifying to their sound Christianity, were also driven away a few years later, and left Spain in 1612 and 1613. The whole number of persons thus forced to emigrate is generally reckoned at about a million, and consisted largely of the most active and industrious among the inhabitants of Spain. Those who had emigrated to Africa were at first well received, but subsequently persecuted also by their own coreligionists, whom their European views and habits displeased, and who were jealous of their skill as workmen; so that they were driven out of Algiers and Fez. Only at Tunis, whose inhabitants were mostly descendants of the Moors of Granada, did they find a really hospitable shelter. A small remnant of Moriscoes, some 60,000 in number, remained concealed in the valleys of the Alpujarras, and have to this day retained their peculiar manners and customs, but they have long since become earnest Roman Catholics. See Conde, Historia de la Dominacion de los Arabes enl Espanna (Madrid, 1820-21, 3 volumes; Engl. transl., Hist. of the Dominion of the Arabs in Spain, by Mrs. Jonathan Foster [London, 1855, 3 volumes, 12mo, Bohn's Library]); Moron, Curso de historia de la Civilizacion de Espanna (Madrid, 1841-3, 3 volumes); Aschbach, Gesch. d. Ommajaden in Spanien (Frankf.-ain-Main, 182,9, 2 volumes); id. Gesch. Spaniens u. Portugals z. Zeit d. Herrschaft d. Almoraviden u. Almohaden (Frankf. 1833-7, 2 volumes); Von Rochau, Die Moriskos in Spanien (Leips. 1853); Herzog, Real Encyklopadie, 9:183 sq.; Wetzer u. Welte, Kirchen-Lexikon, 6:933 sq.; Prescott, Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella; Dozy, Gesch. der Mauren in Spanien bis zur Eroberung Andalusiens durch die Almoraviden (7111110) (Leips. 1873-5); Hallam, History of the Middle Ages (student's ed.), pages 237-43; Ticknor, Spanish Literature, 3:389 sq.; Southern Review (Jan. 1874), art. 2; and especially the seventeen articles by Prof. Coppee on the "Moorish Conquest of Spain," in the Penn Monthly of 1873 (Phila.). SEE MOROCCO.