The Cid Author:Southey(Translation) Neither history nor romance, this 1808 translation from the oldest Spanish poem(1552)tells of heroism in medieval Spain. The--or El--Cid (Spanish Arabic "Lord")was an Arthurian-like leader. — In melodious prose The Cid, Roderigo Diaz de Vivar(1043?-99),originally of Castile,fights the Moors,who respect him, and also fights for a Moorish king. He ... more »later conquered and ruled Moorish Valencia.
El Cid knew the complexities of Hispano-Arabic politics and Islamic law and custom. A "national" hero of Spain,before there were "nations", he was less than saintly, but not a bigot, certainly not a Christian in the narrow legalistic sense.
The Islamic Almoravid invaders from North Africa destroyed his kingdom.
El Cid cannot be viewed accurately as a Christian Spaniard, but he was a bold warrior who lived in a "multicultural" medieval Iberia which was often the most tolerant(if not loving)part of the greater Mediterranean world.« less