The theme of the original “destruction of Spain,” as brought about by the Muslim invasion (an invasion allegedly facilitated by the treason of one Count Julian who, in pursuit of a feud of his own, encouraged the national enemy to cross over from Africa), is endlessly restated with variations by authors at every level of sophistication, from the anonymous creators of Spain's popular ballads to the most erudite of poets. Such writings, and earlier ones from the medieval period, bear witness to an ideology of manifest national destiny. The Islamic conquest, by this view, was an aberration that had needed one day to be corrected. And then, when the Reconquest, completed in 1492, proved unsatisfactory to the victors, left as they were still with the insoluble problem of an insubordinate minority, thoughts turned to the Expulsion. The intention was to bring the peninsula back to the status quo ante, to how things were before 711.
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