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Kingdom of León facts for kids

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Kingdom of León

Shield of León
The Kingdom of León (Green) in 1095.
The Kingdom of León (Green) in 1095.
Capital León
Common languages Astur-Leonese, Latin, Castilian, Mozarabic, Galician-Portuguese
Roman Catholic
Government Feudal monarchy
• 910–914
García I (first)
• 1188–1230
Alfonso IX (last)
Legislature Cortes of León
Historical era Middle Ages
• Established
10 December 910
• Incorporated into the Crown of Castile
23 September 1230
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Emblema del Reino de Asturias.svg Kingdom of Asturias
Attributed Coat of Arms of the Kingdom of Galicia (Segar's Roll).svg Kingdom of Galicia
Crown of Castile Royal Banner of the Crown of Castille (Early Style).svg
County of Portugal PortugueseFlag1095.svg
Today part of  Spain

The Kingdom of León was an independent kingdom situated in the northwest region of the Iberian Peninsula. It was founded in AD 910 when the Christian princes of Asturias along the northern coast of the peninsula shifted their capital from Oviedo to the city of León. The Caliphate of Córdoba was gaining power, and began to attack León.

The kings of León and Navarre allied against Córdoba but were defeated in Valdejunquera, in 920. For the next 80 years, the Kingdom of León suffered civil wars, Moorish attack, internal intrigues and assassinations, and the partial independence of Galicia and Castile, thus setting back the date of Spain's reconquest, and weakening the Christian forces.

The County of Castile separated in 931, the County of Portugal separated to become the independent Kingdom of Portugal in 1139 and the eastern, inland part of León was joined to the Kingdom of Castile in 1230. From 1296 to 1301, the Kingdom of León was again independent and after the re-union with Castile remained a Crown until 1833, but as part of a united Spain from 1479.

In the Royal Decree of 30 November 1833, the Kingdom of León was considered one of the Spanish regions and divided into the provinces of León. In 1978, these three provinces of the region of León were included along with six provinces of the historic region of Old Castile to create the autonomous community of Castile and León.


Alfonso jimena
Alfonso the Great (848-910), King of León, Galicia and Asturias

The city of León was founded by the Roman Seventh Legion. It was the headquarters of that legion in the late empire and was a centre for trade in gold, which was mined at Las Médulas nearby.

In 540, the city was conquered by the Arian Visigothic king Liuvigild, who did not harass the already well-established Roman Catholic population. In AD 717, León fell again, this time to the Moors. However, León was one of the first cities retaken during the Christian reconquest of the Iberian peninsula, and became part of the Kingdom of Asturias in AD 742.

León was a small town during this time, but one of the few former Roman cities in the Kingdom of Asturias which still held significance. During Visigothic times, the city had served as a bishopric, and incorporating the city into Asturias brought legitimacy to the Asturian monarchs who sought to lead a unified Iberian church, during a time when most of the Iberian Peninsula was governed by Muslim powers.

Modern era

Toros de Guisando
Bulls of Guisando in the Ávila. These are found in many towns of the western half of Castile and León

In the 19th century, the Kingdom of León declared war, together with Galicia and Asturias, against France, and organised the Junta General del Reino de León as its own government. The modern region of the Kingdom of León was established in 1833 and was divided into León, Zamora, and Salamanca provinces.

At present, León is composed of the provinces of León, Zamora, and Salamanca, is now part of the autonomous community of Castile and León within the modern Kingdom of Spain.

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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Reino de León para niños

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