pdf online Imperial Spain 1469 1716 AUTHOR J.H. Elliott – ecogenlife.org
Omic background to modern Spain is portrayed and the vast differences between its constituent parts emphasized The roots of Catalan Castilian enmity are methodically described Spain r I recently was looking for something to read and realized my nderstanding of Spanish history pre Civil War was light on the details so off to to look at what s out thereMan That s a thin field to pick fromHugh Thomas histories of High Imperial Spain seemed to have the most noise online about them so I grabbed one and started reading meh Celebrity biography masuerading as history I don t need seven paragraphs on the bloodlines of a minor court functionary thanks and it s some serious Big Man history that spends next to no time on economy of social so I put that volume asideThe only other general survey that seems to exist in English AND in e book format is this one JH Elliott s Imperial Spain So I grabbed thatI tend to lean towards very recent history as there has been a lot of new source material and re examination going on in a lot of historical fields particularly since the fall of the USSR and as regards Spain the post Franco era That said this book originally dates from the 70 s I believe but you wouldn t know it from the reading The author is clear to note that he considered his research source challenged for a variety of reasons and is clear on what points he s making that he believes may change if evidence is ncovered I appreciated this clarity of purpose and problems throughoutOverall I found this an EXCELLENT history particularly for the reader who has a good nderstanding of the general flow of European Colonial and Spanish history to begin with It covers specifically an expanded For the Love of All Thats Holy, Dont Buy a Boat When Venus is in Retrograde understanding of the reign of the Habsburg Dynasty over Spain including the reign of the non Habsburg Catholic Kings that immediately preceded it as well as the very beginning of the Bourbon Dynasty that supplanted itThis ordering his choice of which he goes into detail about in the Introduction makes clear sense as Ferdinand and Isabella obviously finished the Reconuista therebyshering in modern Spain as an entity in the first place and they set the table for the entire Habsburg reign that would see Spain rise to its absolute height of imperial power and majesty as well as crash from that perch in disastrous fashion The Bourbon denouement serves as a proper coda to the entire era immediately after which Spain effectively retreated into a broken shell of itself for arguably two centuriesElliott gives eual focus to the domineering personalities of this era as well as broader socio economic forces at play that influenced the range of and final choices of action those Big Men could choose from This is in my opinion the proper mix that history should aspire to as I don t believe in either a pure Big Man or Inevitable Trend view of history so I was glad to see it strongly represented here He doesn t go into great detail on say the myriad military campaigns that occurred throughout this era instead focusing on the effects of those campaigns Scary Stories 3 upon greater Spanish politics society and economy As the military efforts of any one Habsburg ruler of Spain could easily fill its own thick volume again I agree with the author s choice hereThe writing isite lively and enjoyable which helps when dealing with such a large book covering such a wide topic As an example here s his description of Charles II one of the last and arguably the worst of Spain s sovereigns during this period The poor King himself the centre of so many hopes turned out to be a rachitic and feeble minded weakling the last stunted sprig of a degenerate lineThat s some powerfully descriptive stuff right thereElliott doesn t go overboard with this sort of flowery language saving it for when its impact is actually called for One can tell that he has written a lot in his career and has put a lot of work into sharpening his craft The book moves along thanks to this going into enough detail to evoke the scenes and settings. Ge of Ferdinand Isabella the final expulsion of the Moslems and the discovery of America Spain took on a seemingly nstoppable dynamism that made it into the world's first glob.
Imperial Spain only touches slightly on certain aspects of Spain s imperial past which are now deemed crucial to the story These are for example the devastating fate of millions of natives in the Americas the horrifying slave trade and the role of women However as JH Elliott explains in a convincing argument in his preface from 2001 the book is a product of its time The story told in Imperial Spain does not need to be inferior to newer stories Rather Imperial Spain can be viewed as a complement to modern perspectives and these two ways of looking at history do not need to take hierarchical positions to one another This story centers around the economic and mental life in Spain probably influenced by the Braudelian thought However Elliott also manages to integrate a political narrative in which human agency is perceived as a driving force in history Further Elliott also places the empire of Spain in a wider Western European context and there are even bits and pieces of comparisons between European states On the one hand Elliott s immense research and his refreshing perspectives are impressive On the other hand the literary style and the masterful writing are remarkable Elliott is able to combine historical science and literary techniues in a wonderful manner without sacrificing the scientific value or the readability of the book This is a niue book As a 6th generation Texan of Spanish descent on my mother s side I have always identified myself culturally with the Tex Mex culture of South Texas where I am from I read this book because while I consider myself a history buff I had never studied about my Old World rootsThis book gives a great descriptive almost lifelike overview of Spain from 1469 1716 I ll admit the first 25 30 pages start out slow and seem cumbersome but once it gets to King Ferdinand and The Bartender ueen Isabella it becomes really interesting and you won t want to put it down It serves as a good introduction to Spanish history you don t have to know a lot about Spain beforehand My favorite portion of the book was that of the Spanish Inuisition I am sure you have pre conceived notions about what went on but this book clarifies what actually occurred and shatters a few myths about the Inuisition While there is a slight Anglo Saxon bias I found it to only be subtle I d be hard pressed to find a better overview and introduction to Spanish history in this time period than this oneWhile reading I found myself delving into the specifics of locations battles and people mentioned in the book This opensp even subjects to study For example there are whole books on King Philip II but you get a good summary of what he did while in power in the bookIf you are looking for a catalyst to get started learning about the history of Spain then this book is for you Or if you are like me who wants to know his own history it is definitely for youAs a side note I found it fascinating to learn about the succession of the throne of Spain I hadn t known that current King Juan Carlos I is a direct descendant of the first king of the Bourbon line Philip V I had no interests in Monarchs before reading this book but now I want to learn about European royalty This book gives a good outline of the Monarchs but is by no means a guide to them No wonder Elliott scooped a knighthood given this tour de force My interest in Spanish imperial history was partly forged at A Level but became an obsession after a visit to Madrid s Prado Vel zuez s pictures depict the declining fortunes of the Habsburg family tree riven as they were by the inbreeding resultant from ill judged marriages to cousins nieces and nephews declining fortunes on the battlefield and a particularly macabre vein of Catholicism all agonised crucifixions and obsession with Protestant heresy As Elliott himself suggests by the time of the weakling monarch Carlos II the royal family s fortunes had started to resemble a comic operaBut this is no Jenny Bond style portrait of Kings and Palaces the social and econ. The story of Spain's rise to greatness from its humble beginnings as one of the poorest and most marginal of European countries is a remarkable and dramatic one With the marria.
review Imperial Spain 1469 1716
Without getting mired down in minutiae that doesn t add to the overall Tono Bungay understanding Just to note there are a few small technical problems with the e book addition there s a handful of garbled phrases and the maps which look to have been low detail linework typical of 70 s history books to begin with were not scanned well with spine seams visible and a muddy resolution at best Be prepared to Google some readable maps when they popp Overall though particularly given the paucity of books covering this topic I can whole heartedly recommend this volume for anyone looking for a general history of Imperial Spain Already by the end of the sixteenth century many Spaniards seem to have been gripped by that sense of fatalism which would prompt the famous pronouncement of a Junta of theologians in the reign of Philip IV Summoned to consider a project for the construction of a canal linking the Manzanares and the Tagus it flatly declared that if God had intended the rivers to be navigable He would have made them so For Anglophone readers interested in the history of Spain this book is invaluable Elliott has here accomplished a real feat of research of writing and of analysis The book ably navigates that forbidding passage between simplifying popular accounts and nreadable scholarly monographs managing to be both a work of serious intellectual synthesis and an absorbing account of Spain s history Elliott has an astounding ability to seamlessly combine many disparate threads into the same narrative He pays close attention to economic history crop yields interest rates inflation and deflation the debasement of currency the balance of trade tariffs and regulations He incorporates social and cultural shifts changing religious attitudes demographic trends class tensions intellectual movements And yet he also does not neglect the outstanding individuals Ferdinand and Isabella Charles V Philip II the Conde Duue among others The only thing conspicuously absent was military history which suited me just fine Although the story of Spain during this time was heavily interwoven with both the New World and the rest of Europe Elliott s focus doesn t stray from the Iberian Peninsula He gives only the most cursory account of the Spanish conuest of the Americas and only mentions the struggles of Charles V against the Protestant Reformation For those looking for a history of Spanish colonization this book will therefore be disappointing I must also add that Elliott s judgment is at its worst in his brief section on the conuistadores He describes them as glorious conuering heroes of a barren civilization which I cannot abide in the light of the destruction and exploitation that followed in their wake Keeping those exceptions in mind this book is a superlative account of this period of Spanish history The competing centrifugal and centralizing forces at play the conflicting traditions of Castilian and Aragonese governments the infinitely subtle machinations of power the gradual emergence of a national identity the meteoric rise of the Spanish Empire the cruel grinding decline that followed the heroic and hapless individuals struggling with forces beyond their control all this is related with brevity insight and power It is difficult not to see the whole story as a morality play writ large What with the ruthless exploitation of the treasure mines of the New World the expulsion of the Jews and the Moors the obsession with purity of blood and the alignment of religious orthodoxy with central power it seems as if the collapse of the grand but hollow edifice was the inevitable result of intolerance and folly But even if we can learn some valuable lessons from this history it is important to remember that the story is not so simple and many decisions which in retrospect seem obviously foolish were at the time fairly reasonable though of course many weren t In short I heartily recommend this book to anyone interested in this fascinating time and place It could hardly be bette. Al power This amazing success however created many powerful enemies and Elliott's famous book charts the dramatic fall of Habsburg Spain with the same elan as it charts the ris.
Sir John Huxtable Elliott FBA is an English historian Regius Professor Emeritus at the University of Oxford and Honorary Fellow of Oriel College Oxford and Trinity College Cambridge He publishes under the name JH ElliottBorn in Reading Berkshire Elliott was educated at Eton College and Trinity College Cambridge He was an assistant lecturer at Cambridge University from 1957 to 1962 and