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The Problems Of Succession

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Chapter Summary

In the Middle Ages, the periods of transition of power from one king to another were always traumatic and often tinged with blood. The relative peace enjoyed by Alfonso and his reign starting in 1258 that led him to accelerate the implementation of his cultural enterprises also made him reflect on his succession. Alfonso's attempt to make his heir knight his brothers and the other nobles reveals, on the one hand, the degree of attention Alfonso accorded to the symbols of feudal investiture with which he wanted to honor his favorite child as legitimate heir. On the other, they show the distance that from this moment on was established as a result of that paternal preference between Fernando and his brothers. Finally, the change of heir, besides fundamentally contradicting Alfonso's political and legal ideology, conflicted with his agreements and commitments with the king of France.

Keywords: Alfonso; cultural enterprises; legal ideology; middle ages

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