Spain is situated on the Iberian Peninsula, at the far
western end of Europe. In the last 50 years, Spain
has changed from being one of the most isolated
countries in the Western world to having global
connections. It is now an important and influential
country as part of the European Union, and Spanish
is the third most common language in the world,
after Chinese Mandarin and English.
gj Spain has three international borders, a short border with
Gibraltar, a British territory, and includes the Canary Islands.
The heart of Spain
Spain is divided into several
landscapes and peoples. Ca-stile,
in the middle of the country,
is centred around the capital,
Madrid, and has a harsh
landscape of broad plains and
rugged mountains. The name
Castile means 'Land of Castles',
and there are many forts on the
hilltops of Castile. The people
who live there - Castilians - have
been the dominant force in Spain
since the fifteenth century. They
sponsored the first voyages of
established colonies there,
making Spain the world's first
major colonial power.
When it was built during the eighth
century, the mosque at Cordoba was
the second largest in the world, and it
was one of the most important places
in the Islamic Empire. The Moorish
influence can be seen in its architecture.
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The inside of the mosque at
Cordoba has more than 1,000
pillars supporting arches designed
a Roman Catholic cathedral
in 1236 CE.
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