English historian Bettany Hughes presents the second of a fascinating two-part series on the contribution the Muslims made to modern Europe during their 700-year reign in Spain, which ended with the Spanish Inquisition in the 14th century.
Hughes continues to unfurl the stunning Spanish travelogue of Part One of When the Moors Ruled in Europe, as she reveals the compelling history of the rise and fall of Islam in the West.
Al Andalus, as the Islamist Moors called their Spanish settlement, was the centre of massive intellectual and cultural revolution and many modern practices in mathematics, architecture and chemistry stem from knowledge developed there.
And along the way, Hughes reveals some surprises in the complicated and messy relationship between Islamic and Catholic Spain, shedding some shocking new light on the brutal Holy War between the two.
Compare this to what's happening now in the Muslim world. The part about how mercenaries where behind what was falsely written down in history as a war between two religions is chilling considering how the war on terrorism is being spun.
The parallels between modern-day democracies and the Inquisition as well as the ethnic cleansing of Granada by Isabelle and Ferdinand are really stunning.
The Moors are the Muslim African and Berber inhabitants of the western Mediterranean and western Sahara, including the Maghreb (the coastal and mountain lands of present day Morocco and Algeria, and Tunisia although Tunisia often is separately called Ifriqiya after the former Roman province of Africa); al-Andalus (the former Islamic sovereign areas now the region of Andalucia in southern Spain, as well as central Spain and Portugal); lands of the Sahara western to central (Mauritania and Mali, southern Morocco and Algeria, parts of Niger, Chad, and Libya); and, the strait cities of Gibraltar, and Ceuta and Melilla; as well as perhaps the Canary Islands and Sicily.