Historia Baetica: Dramatic Play or Historical Document?

Historia Baetica: Dramatic Play or Historical Document?

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Historia Baetica: Dramatic Play or Historical Document?

By Cristina Potz

Journal of Historical and European Studies, Vol.1 (2007)

Abstract: In my paper I discuss the possibility that Carlo Verardi, author of the Historia Baetica, could have had knowledge of a secret agreement between the Catholic Kings, Ferdinand and Isabel of Castile and Boabdil, king of the Islamic emirate of Granada, regarding the take-over of the fortress of the Alhambra by Gutierre de Cárdenas, during the night between the first and second of January 1492, preceding the official hand over of the Alhambra to Ferdinand, planned for the second of January.

Several scholars have indicated the Historia as a probable documentary source of the event. I propose that the author did perhaps know of the ‘first’ unofficial take over of the Alhambra by Gutierre, but that he did not have any knowledge of the secret agreement. My hypothesis would provide a reasonable explanation as to why Verardi appears to have incorporated into his encomiastic play details telling of the secret agreement which Ferdinand, the Castilian king, wished to keep secret.

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