How far was Spain unified by 1516?

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How far was Spain unified by 1516?

In 1469, Isabella of Castile, sister to the King of Castile married Ferdinand of Aragon, heir to the throne of Aragon, in a celebration that was "furtively arranged and incongruously celebrated." Their union, representing the union of Aragon and Castile, is often seen as a symbol of the union of Spain and their reign (up till 1515 - with the death of Ferdinand) the foundation of Spain as a united country and the head of a large empire. The extent to which their union and their reigns united Spain can be assessed on the basis of their religious, foreign, economic and administrative actions in both Aragon and Castile. However, one should note that despite the union of their persons, the bonds of union between Aragon and Castile were very tenuous during their reign; in fact, the two only gained a united constitution in 1715, two centuries after their reign. This is an indication of the limited extent of unity in Spain under Ferdinand and Isabella.

It could be said that it was in the religious sphere that the Catholic Kings (ie. Ferdinand and Isabella) created some genuine unity. Their successful reconquest of Granada from the Muslim Moors in 1492 as well as their expulsion of the Jews in that same year created a religious uniformity, especially with the forced conversion of the Moors.

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The Inquisition under Isabella and Cisneros (Archbishop of Toledo), both reformed and rejuvenated the Catholic Church, also providing a strong base for unity in religion. The Inquisition as well as the acquisitions of the powers of church appointment from the Pope (1496) also established the Crown's control over the Church, strengthening it both politically and financially (as one-third of all tithes as well as the cruzada) now accrued to the Crown. Any move that strengthened the power of the Crown can be seen as a move for unity.

However, even in this apparent success in the religious spheres, ...

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