Al-Andalus (Arabic: الأندلس) was the Arabic name given to the parts of the Iberian Peninsula governed by Muslims from 711 to 1492. 

As the Iberian Peninsula was slowly regained by Christians attacking southward in the long process known as the Reconquista. The name Al-Andalus came to refer to the Muslim-dominated lands of the Iberian Peninsula with a receding frontier.

Just before the invasion (ca. 710).

Prior to the arrival of the Arabs, the Visigothic rivals of King Rodrigo (Roderick, in English) face political rivalry with Akila (son of former King Witiza) for the succession to the throne. Moreover, it is said that the Rodrigo’s opponent asked Muslims to help him become the King

However, we must understand this invasion within the context of the Islamic expansion; as they have already conquered the present-day Morocco, next step was to arrive in Europe. In fact, the invasion was preceded by raids in the southern coast of Cádiz, as it happens in 710 in Algeciras. 

The Conquest (711- ca. 716).

Under the command of Tariq  a small force (12,000 men) landed at Gibraltar in 711. After a decisive victory at the Battle of Guadalete on July 19, 711, Tariq along with Muza, who led another 18,000 men-large army in 712, brought most of the Iberian Peninsula under Muslim occupation in a five-year campaign.

The Iberian peninsula, except for the a narrow strip of land in the North of the Peninsula, from the Cantabrian Range to the sea (mainly, nowadays Asturias and Cantabria), became part of the expanding Umayyad empire, under the name of Al-Andalus. The earliest mention to Al-Andalus is in a dinar coin dating from 716.

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