The Jiménez dynasty, alternatively called the Jimena, the Sancha, the Banu Sancho, the Abarca or the Banu Abarca,[1] was a medieval ruling family which, beginning in the 9th century, eventually grew to control the royal houses of several kingdoms on the Iberian Peninsula during the 11th and 12th centuries, namely the Kingdoms of Navarre, Aragon, Castile, León and Galicia as well as of other territories in the South of France.[2][3][4][5] The family played a major role in the Reconquista, expanding the territory under the direct control of the Christian states as well as subjecting neighboring Muslim taifas to vassalage. Each of the Jiménez royal lines ultimately went extinct in the male line in the 12th or 13th century.

CountryKingdom of Navarre (Kingdom of Pamplona) (control lost in 1234)
Kingdom of Aragon (control lost in 1164)
Kingdom of Castile (control lost in 1126)
Kingdom of León (control lost in 1126)
 Kingdom of Galicia (control lost in 1126)
FounderPrince García Jiménez of Pamplona
Current headExtinct
Final rulerSancho VII
TitlesEmperor of all Spain
King of Leon
King of Castile
King of Galicia
King of Aragon
King of Pamplona
King of Navarre
King of Viguera
Queen Consort of England
Queen Consort of Sicily
Count of Aragon
Count of the Principate
Count of Montescaglioso
Countess of Champagne

History edit

The first known member of the family, García Jiménez of Pamplona, is obscure, it being stated by the Códice de Roda that he was "king of another part of the kingdom" of Pamplona, presumably lord of part of Navarre beyond the area of direct control of the Íñiguez kings: probably the frontier areas of Álava and the western Pyrenees given the list of their landholdings preserved in a later charter. It was long believed that their origins lay in Gascony.[6]

In 905 Sancho Garcés, a younger son of the dynasty founder, used foreign assistance to displace the Íñiguez ruler Fortún Garcés and consolidate the monarchy in his dynasty's hands. He would be viewed as founder of the dynasty, with several Iberian Muslim sources calling the family the Banu Sanjo (Arabic: بنو شانجه - the descendants of Sancho) for several subsequent generations, while a 12th-century Tunisian chronicler of Al-Andalus, Ibn al-Kardabūs, referred to Sancho III of Pamplona as ibn Abarca (Arabic: بن أبرك - son or descendant of Abarca), referencing a nickname originally borne by Sancho I in the naming of this Banu Abarca dynasty.[1] In addition to repulsing several attacks from the Emir of Córdoba, Sancho I crushed the neighboring Banu Qasi and thus expanded Pamplona to the upper Ebro River valley, as well as incorporating the previously-autonomous County of Aragon into the realm.

Following the death of Sancho in 925, his brother Jimeno Garcés maintained a position of strength, intervening in the politics of neighboring Christian and Muslim states. His death left the crown to his nephew, Sancho's son García Sánchez I, who was still a child. Originally ruling under the tutelage of his mother, the Íñiguez descendant Toda Aznar who established a web of political and marital alliances among the Iberian Christian states, invited the intervention of his cousin Abd-ar-Rahman III of Córdoba to achieve emancipation from his mother. Thereupon followed three generations of defeat and subjugation by the Caliphate. For his younger son, García created a short-lived sub-kingdom centered at Viguera, which lasted for several decades until its reabsorption into the Kingdom of Pamplona.

The latter only emancipated itself from Cordoban suzerainty during the reign of Sancho the Great, who ruled from 1000 to 1035 in Pamplona, but also ruled Aragon, Castile, Ribagorza and eventually León (but not Galicia) by right of conquest. He received the homage of the Count of Barcelona and possibly of the Duke of Gascony. After his coronation in León, he even took up the imperial title over all Spain. His vast domains were divided amongst his sons at his death, giving rise to three independent medieval kingdoms each ruled by a Jiménez monarch.

The Kingdom of Navarre, passing to the eldest son García, was unable to maintain its hegemony, leading to the full independence of Aragon under his illegitimate brother Ramiro I, who had previously taken over the territories of murdered brother Gonzalo of Sobrarbe and Ribagorza. Younger sibling Ferdinand I, then Count of Castile, killed in battle his nominal overlord the King of León and Galicia in 1037 and thereby inheriting them and bringing them fully into the orbit of his ruling clan. He then defeated García, achieving a sort of hegemony over his brothers, but again divided his realm among his sons. One of these, Alfonso VI, not only succeeded to the reunited realm of his father, but also conquered Toledo, reclaimed the imperial title and even pretended to rule over both Christian and Muslim Spain.

The Navarre branch of the dynasty went into eclipse when in 1076 Sancho IV was assassinated by his siblings, and his cousins Alfonso VI of Castile and Sancho Ramírez of Aragon converged and divided the kingdom, with the Aragon ruler gaining the Navarre crown, while ceding western lands to Castile.

The holdings of the family were briefly reunited when Alfonso the Battler of Navarre and Aragon married Alfonso VI's daughter Urraca, Queen of Castile and León, and claimed the imperial title. However, the marriage failed and the kingdoms of Castile and León passed out of the dynasty, to Urraca's son by a prior marriage. The Kingdom of Aragon and that of Navarre likewise went their separate ways following Alfonso's death, the former passing to his brother, the latter to a descendant of its original ruling family, with each eventually passing to other dynasties through heiresses: Petronilla of Aragon, who married the ruler of Barcelona and thus united those two realms into the Crown of Aragon; and Blanca, sister of Sancho VII of Navarre, whose 1234 death brought Jiménez rule to an end.

The Borgias of Italy in the 15th century would present a pedigree that traced their ancestry to Pedro de Atarés, lord of Borja, Zaragoza, who had been a competitor for the thrones of Navarre and Aragon following the death of Alfonso the Battler. Pedro was a scion of this family, being grandson of Sancho Ramírez, Count of Ribagorza, illegitimate brother of king Sancho Ramírez of Aragon. Such a descent would thus have made the Borgias male-line descendants of the Jiménez dynasty. However, the descent was a fabrication.

Rulers edit

Emperors in bold. Date of assumption of imperial title in bold and parentheses.

Ruler Born Reign Death Ruling part Consort Notes
García Jiménez   c.835 c.850-885 After 885 Pamplona Oneca of Sangüesa
two children

Dadildis of Pallars
two children
Sub- or co-king in a part of Pamplona, during the rule of Garcia I Iñiguez and/or Fortún Garcés of Pamplona.
Sancho I Abarca   c.860 905-925 10 December 925 Pamplona Toda Aznárez of Larraun
six children
Supplanted Fortun Garcés as king of Pamplona
Jimeno Garcés of Pamplona
c.860 925-932/3 932/3 Pamplona Sancha Aznárez of Larraun
three children
Brother of Sancho I. He appears as prince or king, first acting alone, then along with his nephew, Garcia.
Toda Aznárez of Larraun (regent)   2 January 876 925-933 15 October 958 Pamplona Sancho I of Pamplona
six children
Regent in name of her son.
Garcia Sánchez I   919 933-970 22 February 970 Pamplona Andregoto Galíndez of Aragon
(annulled 943)
two children

Teresa of León
three children
Minor son of Sancho I at the time of his father's death, he first appears a few years later as co-king with his uncle Jimena, then sole king under the regency of his mother. At his death the Kingdom of Viguera was created for his younger son.
Sancho II   938 943-970 994 Aragon Urraca Fernández of Castile
four children
Son of Garcia Sánchez I and Andregoto.
970-994 Pamplona & Aragon
Ramiro Garcés   c.945 970-981 9 July 981 Viguera Unknown
two sons
Son of Garcia Sánchez I and Teresa of León. First king of Viguera.
Sancho Ramírez ? 981-1002 c.1002 Viguera Unknown
a daughter?
Left no male descendants and was succeeded by his brother. Possibly regent, or even king, of Pamplona 1000-1002
Garcia Sánchez II the Trembling   964 994-1000 (29 July?) 1000 Pamplona
Jimena Fernández of Cea
four children
Urraca Fernández of Castile (regent)   ? 994-997 1007 Aragon Urraca Fernández of Castile
four children
Daughter of Fernán González of Castile and Sancha Sánchez of Pamplona. Previously wife of Ordoño III of León and Ordoño IV of León.
Gonzalo Sánchez ? 994-997 997 Aragon Unmarried Son of Sancho II. Ruled under regency of his mother, probably died still a minor.
In 997 Aragon was reabsorbed in Pamplona
Garcia Ramírez ? 1002-1025 c.1025? Viguera Toda
two children
After his death with no male descendants, Viguera was reabsorbed in Pamplona.
In 997 Viguera was reabsorbed in Pamplona
Jimena Fernández of Cea (regent) c.970 1000-1014 c.1045 Pamplona & Aragon Garcia Sánchez II
four children
Regent in name of her son, with her mother-in-law.
Sancho III the Great   c.992 1014-1035
18 October 1035 Pamplona Muniadona of Castile
five children
His death precipitated a division of the historical Pamplona lands, a distribution that evolved into three Iberian kingdoms: Aragon, Navarre and Castile.
Ferdinand I the Great   1016 1029-1037

27 December 1065 Castile

Castile & León
Sancha, Queen of León
five children
Younger son of Sancho III, he was named count of Castile by his father following the death of his maternal uncle in 1029. He merged this into the Kingdom of León, which he acquired in right of his wife Sancha in 1037. At his death he divided his kingdom into three for his sons, while naming his daughters suzereign over cities.
Garcia Sánchez III of Nájera   1012 1035-1054 1 September 1054 Pamplona Stephanie of Foix
eight children
Eldest legitimate son of Sancho III, received Pamplona and suzereignty over his brothers.
Gonzalo Sánchez 1020 1035-1045 26 June 1045 Sobrarbe & Ribagorza Unmarried Son of Sancho III, received the counties of Sobrarbe and Ribagorza, which came from his mother, who had rights over those territories. Left no descendants, and his territories went to his half-brother Ramiro.
Sobrabe and Ribagorza were absorbed by Aragon
Ramiro I   1006/7 1035-1063 8 May 1063 Aragon Ermesinda of Foix
five children

Agnes of Aquitaine I
after 1049
no children
Natural son of Sancho III, received lands in Aragon that he eventually expanded into a sub-kingdom through the absorption of his brother Gonzalo's counties.
Sancho IV the Noble   1039 1054-1076 4 June 1076 Pamplona Plaisance of Normandy
three children
Assassinated. He left a minor child, Garcia Sanchez, but he was considered not fit for the throne for his age, and the throne was given to the king of Aragon.
Sancho Ramírez (V of Pamplona)   1042 1063-1076

4 June 1094 Aragon

Pamplona & Aragon
Isabella of Urgell
(annulled 1070)
one child

Felicia of Roucy
three children
Son of Ramiro I, was chosen as the new king of Pamplona in 1076, reuniting the kingdoms once more.
Sancho II the Strong   1038/9 1065-1071

7 October 1072 Castile

Castile & León
no children
Son of Ferdinand I, from 1071 deposed his brothers and took briefly control of all the inheritance of his father, before he was assassinated.
Castile was reabsorbed in León
Garcia II   1042 1065-1071 21 March 1090 Galicia Unmarried Son of Ferdinand I, from 1071 he was deposed by Sancho II and Alfonso; tried to return after Sancho's assassination, but Alfonso arrested and banished him to the Castle of Luna, where he eventually died many years later.
Galicia was reabsorbed in Castile, and then in León
Alfonso VI the Brave   1040 1065-1071

21 March 1090 León

León & Castile
Agnes of Aquitaine
no children

Constance of Burgundy
one child

Bertha (of Savoy?)
25 November 1093
no children

Isabel (Zaida?)
two (three?) children

no children
Reunited the inheritance of his father and conquered Kingdom of Toledo, but his only surviving children were daughters. The kingdom went to eldest daughter Urraca, while the County of Portugal, given to his daughter Theresa and her husband, would become the Kingdom of Portugal a generation later.
Peter I   1068 1094-1104 28 December 1104 Aragon & Pamplona Agnes of Aquitaine
two children

Bertha (of Savoy II?)
no children
Son of Sancho Ramírez. His own children didn't survive him and he was succeeded by his brother Alfonso.
Theresa   1080 1096-1128 11 November 1130 Portugal Henry of Burgundy
six children
Daughter of Alfonso VI, co-ruled in Portugal with her husband since 1096. Her ambition of reuniting the county with the old Kingdom of Galicia, with her adoption of royal title from 1116, and alliances with important Galician families led the Portuguese nobles to support her son Afonso Henriques as a candidate for the comital throne. Deposed after her defeat at Battle of São Mamede in 1128.
With the death of Teresa the line of the Jimena family died out in Portugal, which was inherited by Afonso Henriques, from the Portuguese House of Burgundy.
Alfonso I the Battler   1073 1104-1134
7 September 1134 Aragon & Pamplona Urraca I of León and Castile
(annulled 1112)
no children
Died without children. Left his kingsdoms to the knightly orders, the nobility of the two kingdoms chose different scions of the Jimenez dynasty as their kings, separating the two kingdoms.
Urraca the Reckless   April 1079 1109-1111

8 March 1126 Galicia

León & Castile
Raymond of Burgundy
two children

Alfonso I of Aragon
(annulled 1112)
no children
Daughter of Alfonso VI, abdicated from Galicia to her son in 1111. Her problematic marriage with Alfonso of Aragon brought many conflicts between the spouses, even after their separation in 1112. Those conflicts endured throughout her reign.
With the death of Urraca the line of the Jimenez family died out in León & Castile, which were inherited by Alfonso VII of León and Castile, from the House of Ivrea.
Garcia V (Ramírez) the Restorer   ? 1134-1150 21 November 1150 Pamplona Margaret of L'Aigle
four children

Urraca of Castile the Asturian
24 June 1144
no children
Grandson of Sancho Garcés, illegitimate son of Garcia Sánchez III of Pamplona.
Ramiro II the Monk   24 April 1086 1134-1157 16 August 1157 Aragon Agnes of Aquitaine
13 November 1135
(annulled 1136/7)
one child
Last surviving son of Sancho Ramirez. Withdrawn from monastic life to inherit the throne, then as soon as his daughter was old enough to marry, he wed her to the Count of Barcelona, to whom he passed royal authority.
Sancho VI the Wise   1133 1150-1194 27 June 1194 Navarre Sancha of Castile
2 June 1157
Carrión de los Condes
six children
He was the first monarch to adopt the title King of Navarre.
Petronilla I   29 June/11 August 1136 1157-1164 15 October 1173 Aragon Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Barcelona
August 1150
five children
Petronila I of Aragon, only daughter of Ramiro II, got married with Ramon Berenguer IV, ruler of the count of Barcelona. The dynastic union in 1137 gave rise to the Crown of Aragon. Through the prenuptial agreement (Capitulaciones matrimoniales) under Aragonese law, Petronila I was the sole queen, while Ramon Berenguer IV only becoming consort princeps but not king nor proprietor of the Kingdom of Aragon. After his death, Petronila abdicated in 1164 to their son, Alfonso II of Aragon who continued the dynasty of House of Aragon and also inheritating the title of count of Barcelona following his father's House of Barcelona. After the abdication, she pursued a monastic life for herself.[7]
Sancho VII the Strong   17 April 1154 1194-1234 7 April 1234 Navarre Constance of Toulouse
(annulled 1200)
no children
Left no descendants. The Navarrese throne went to his French nephew, the count of Champagne.
With the death of Sancho VII the line of the Jimenez family died out in Navarre, which were inherited by Theobald I of Navarre, from the House of Champagne. As Sancho VII was the last living member of the family at the time of his death, Jimena dynasty became extinct after his death.

Family tree of the House of Jiménez edit

Aznar I
count of Aragon
king of Pamplona
Galindo I
count of Aragon
king of Pamplona
Athnar II
count of Aragon
Onneca GarcésJiméno
king of Pamplona
co- or sub-king of Pamplona
count of Laron/Larraun
Onneca Fortúnez
Galindo II
count of Aragon
Sancha GarcésSancho I
king of Pamplona
king of Pamplona
Sancha Aznares
AndregotoGarcia I
king of Pamplona,
count of Aragon
Sancho II
king of Pamplona,
count of Aragon
king of Viguera
Garcia II
king of Pamplona,
count of Aragon
count of Aragon
king of Viguera
king of Viguera
Sancho III
king of Pamplona,
count of Aragon
countess of Castile
Alfonso V
king of León
(illeg.) Ramiro I
king of Aragon
Garcia III
king of Pamplona
JiménaBermundo III
king of León
Ferdinand I
king of Castile, León
count of Sobrabe & Ribagorza
(illeg.) Sancho Ramírez, Count of RibagorzaSancho V
king of Pamplona,
king of Aragon
García Ramírez (bishop)Sancho IV
king of Pamplona
(illeg.) Sancho
lord of Uncastillo
lord of Calhorra
Sancho II
king of Castile
Alfonso VI
king of León
Garcia II
king of Galicia
lord of Aivar & Atarès
Peter I
king of Pamplona,
king of Aragon
Alfonso I
king of Pamplona,
king of Aragon
Ramiro II of Aragon
king of Aragon
(daughter of El Cid)
lord of Monzón
queen of Castile & León
heir apparent
countess of Portugal
Pedro de AtarésRamon Berenguer IV
Count of Barcelon
Petronilla I
queen of Aragon
Garcia IV
king of Navarre
Kings of CastilleKings of Portugal
Alfonso II
king of Aragon
count of Barcelona
Sancho VI
king of Navarre
count of Montescaglioso
Kings of AragonSancho VII
king of Navarre
regent of Navarre
Theobald III
count of Campagne

References edit

  1. ^ a b Alberto Cañada Juste, "¿Quién fue Sancho Abarca?, Príncipe de Viana, 73: 79–132.
  2. ^ Linehan, Peter (1993). History and the Historians of Medieval Spain. Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press. ISBN 9780198219453.
  3. ^ O'Callaghan, Joseph F. (1975). A History of Medieval Spain. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. ISBN 9780801492648.
  4. ^ Cañada Juste, Alberto (mayo-agosto 2011). «En los albores del reino ¿dinastía Íñiga?, ¿dinastía Jimena?». En Gobierno de Navarra, ed. Príncipe de Viana. ISSN 0032-8472. Consultado el 18 de octubre de 2014.
  5. ^ Anónimo (junio de 2010). «Liber regum (o Libro de las generaciones y linajes de los reyes». Cuadro genealógico simplificado de los linajes regios navarros. e-Spania. Consultado el 18 de octubre de 2014.
  6. ^ Roger Collins, The Basques (Blackwell, 1986), p. 163.
  7. ^ Henry Kamen, Empire: how Spain became a world power, 1492-1762, 2002:20.
House of Jiménez
Preceded by
House of Íñiguez
Ruling House of

905 - 1234
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Ruling House of Aragon

948-1035 (as counts); 1035-1164 (as kings)
Succeeded by
Preceded by
House of Beni Mamaduna
Ruling House of Castile

1037 - 1126
Succeeded by
Preceded by  
Ruling House of León

1037 - 1126
Succeeded by