Spanish Monarch. Ferdinand, also known as Fernando, was born in Sos, Spain, the son of Juana Enríquez and Juan II, King of Aragon and Navarre. In a politically expedient move, he married Isabella of Castile in October 1469. They had five surviving children including Juana, called la Loca, and Caterina who would become the first wife of Henry VIII of England. The marriage began, however, with almost continual separation as they fought to maintain their kingdoms and add to them. He succeeded to the title of King Fernando V de Castilla in 1474; to the title of King Fernando de Aragón in 1479; King Fernando de Navarre and Fernando II de España in 1512. In 1478, Isabella and Ferdinand had established the Spanish Inquisition and set out on a campaign of compelling religious homogenization. The monarchs began a conquest of Granada which was under Moorish control, achieving a final victory by 1492. That same year the crown ordered both the expulsion of the Jews from Spain, and chose to finance the expedition of Christopher Columbus, which would bring New World wealth to Spain. Pope Alexander VI gave him the honorary by-name of “the Catholic” in 1496. Following an abortive Moorish revolt in 1502, Moslems who refused baptism were also expelled from Spain. Isabella and Ferdinand managed to unite Spain, centralize the crown's power, successfully execute the reconquista of Granada, and lay the groundwork for Spain as a dominant power of the next century. After Isabella died in 1504, he married the French king's niece, Germaine de Foix the following year. In 1513 his health began to falter. In early 1516, he began a trip to Granada, and died en route, at the sanctuary of Guadalupe. His will directed that his body be removed to Granada and buried next Isabella.
Bio by: Iola
Juan II of Aragon