domingo, 10 de enero de 2016

Extensive listening: Blood and Gold- The Making of Spain

In Conquest, the first of this three-episode BBC Series, Simon Sebag Montefiore explores Spain's early years, its emergence as the battleground of empires and its golden age under the Cordoba Caliphate.

We are in Andalusia, following Hannibal as he arrives in Cadiz to raise an army and conquer Rome, complete with elephants. Then past the early Christians, keen for martyrdom, and on to the Umayyad dynasties, who built gorgeously (the Mezquita in Cordoba) and treated those who opposed them equally extravagantly – the punishment for unwilling concubines is gleefully described. On the way, we meet musicians and poets, and it all looks quite stunning: places like Italica and Madinat al-Zahra should expect an immediate jump in visitor numbers.