Spain the Kingdom of Spain, is a country located in Europe. Its continental European territory is situated on the Iberian Peninsula, its territory includes two archipelagoes: the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa, the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea. The African enclaves of Ceuta, Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera make Spain the only European country to have a physical border with an African country. Several small islands in the Alboran Sea are part of Spanish territory; the country's mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea except for a small land boundary with Gibraltar. With an area of 505,990 km2, Spain is the largest country in Southern Europe, the second largest country in Western Europe and the European Union, the fourth largest country in the European continent. By population, Spain is the fifth in the European Union. Spain's capital and largest city is Madrid. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago. Iberian cultures along with ancient Phoenician, Greek and Carthaginian settlements developed on the peninsula until it came under Roman rule around 200 BCE, after which the region was named Hispania, based on the earlier Phoenician name Spn or Spania.
At the end of the Western Roman Empire the Germanic tribal confederations migrated from Central Europe, invaded the Iberian peninsula and established independent realms in its western provinces, including the Suebi and Vandals. The Visigoths would forcibly integrate all remaining independent territories in the peninsula, including Byzantine provinces, into the Kingdom of Toledo, which more or less unified politically and all the former Roman provinces or successor kingdoms of what was documented as Hispania. In the early eighth century the Visigothic Kingdom fell to the Moors of the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate, who arrived to rule most of the peninsula in the year 726, leaving only a handful of small Christian realms in the north and lasting up to seven centuries in the Kingdom of Granada; this led to many wars during a long reconquering period across the Iberian Peninsula, which led to the creation of the Kingdom of Leon, Kingdom of Castile, Kingdom of Aragon and Kingdom of Navarre as the main Christian kingdoms to face the invasion.
Following the Moorish conquest, Europeans began a gradual process of retaking the region known as the Reconquista, which by the late 15th century culminated in the emergence of Spain as a unified country under the Catholic Monarchs. Until Aragon had been an independent kingdom, which had expanded toward the eastern Mediterranean, incorporating Sicily and Naples, had competed with Genoa and Venice. In the early modern period, Spain became the world's first global empire and the most powerful country in the world, leaving a large cultural and linguistic legacy that includes more than 570 million Hispanophones, making Spanish the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese. During the Golden Age there were many advancements in the arts, with world-famous painters such as Diego Velázquez; the most famous Spanish literary work, Don Quixote, was published during the Golden Age. Spain hosts the world's third-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Spain is a secular parliamentary democracy and a parliamentary monarchy, with King Felipe VI as head of state.
It is a major developed country and a high income country, with the world's fourteenth largest economy by nominal GDP and sixteenth largest by purchasing power parity. It is a member of the United Nations, the European Union, the Eurozone, the Council of Europe, the Organization of Ibero-American States, the Union for the Mediterranean, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the Schengen Area, the World Trade Organization and many other international organisations. While not an official member, Spain has a "Permanent Invitation" to the G20 summits, participating in every summit, which makes Spain a de facto member of the group; the origins of the Roman name Hispania, from which the modern name España was derived, are uncertain due to inadequate evidence, although it is documented that the Phoenicians and Carthaginians referred to the region as Spania, therefore the most accepted etymology is a Semitic-Phoenician one.
Down the centuries there have been a number of accounts and hypotheses: The Renaissance scholar Antonio de Nebrija proposed that the word Hispania evolved from the Iberian word Hispalis, meaning "city of the western world". Jesús Luis Cunchillos argues that the root of the term span is the Phoenician word spy, meaning "to forge metals". Therefore, i-spn-ya would mean "the land where metals are forged", it may be a derivation of the Phoenician I-Shpania, meaning "island of rabbits", "land of rabbits" or "edge", a reference to Spain's location at the end of the Mediterranean. The word in question means "Hyrax" due to Phoenicians confusing the two animals. Hispania may derive from the poetic use of the term Hesperia, reflecting the Greek perception of Italy as a "western land" or "land of the setting sun" (Hesperia
A bullfighter is a performer in the art of bullfighting. "Torero" or "toureiro" are the Spanish and Portuguese words for bullfighter and describe all the performers in the sport of bullfighting as practised in Spain, Mexico, France, Ecuador and other countries influenced by Portuguese and Spanish culture. The main performer and leader of the entourage in a bullfight, who kills the bull, is addressed as maestro, or with the formal title matador de toros; the other bullfighters in the entourage are called subalternos and their suits are embroidered in silver as opposed to the matador's more-theatrical gold. They include the picadores and banderilleros. In English, a torero is sometimes referred to by the term toreador, popularized by Georges Bizet in his opera Carmen. In Spanish, the word designates bullfighters on horseback, but is little used today, having been entirely displaced by rejoneador. A small number of women have been bullfighters on foot or on horseback. Female matadors have experienced considerable resistance and public hostility from some aficionados and other matadors.
Toreros start fighting younger bulls, are called novilleros. Fighting of mature bulls commences only after a special match, called "the Alternative". At this same bullfight, the novillero is presented to the crowd; the act of bullfighting is not called or considered a stand-alone sport but rather a performance art. There is any formal classification. Further still, bullfighting started more with nobles upon horseback, all lancing bulls with accompanying commoners on foot doing helper jobs; as time went by, the work of the commoners on foot gained in importance up to the point whereupon they became the main and only act. Bullfighting on horseback became a separate and distinct act called "rejoneo", still performed today, although less often. Bullfighting on foot became a means for poor, able-bodied men to achieve fame and fortune, similar to the role of boxing in many countries; when asked why he risked his life, one famous torero answered, Más cornadas da el hambre. Today, it is common for a bullfighter to be born into a family of bullfighters.
The established term, Maletilla or espontáneo, is attributed to those who illegally jump into the ring and attempt to bullfight for their sake and glory. While the practice itself is despised by many spectators and fans alike, such as El Cordobés, started their careers this way. A matador de toros is considered to be both an artist and an athlete, possessing great agility, co-ordination. One of the most famous matadors was Juan Belmonte, whose technique in the ring revolutionized bullfighting and remains an established standard by which a great deal of bullfighters are judged; the style and bravery of the matador is regarded as being, at least important as to whether or not he kills the bull. The most successful matadores used to be treated like pop stars, with matching financial incomes, cult followings and accompanied by lurid tabloid stories about their romantic conquests with women; however today's top matadors earn less, in real terms, than their peers did in the 1960s—and much of mass media coverage is only limited to a handful of matadors known as the "mediáticos", the sum of which do not include any of the nation's prized bullfighters in Spain.
The great personal danger of bullfighting adds to the performing matador's mystique. One of the most famous bullfighters in history, died this way in 1947; the most recent bullfighter to die this way was the matador Iván Fandiño on 17 June 2017 in Aire-sur-l'Adour, France. This hazard is said to be central to the appeal of bullfighting; the American writer Ernest Hemingway was a bullfighting aficionado. Within his fictional works, The Sun Also Rises features a matador and scenes of bullfighting, as do his short stories The Capital of the World and The Undefeated. Outside of fiction, he wrote at length on the subject in Death in the Afternoon and The Dangerous Summer. In 1962, Hollywood producer David Wolper produced "The Story Of A Matador", documenting what it's like to be a matador. In this case, it was the late Matador Jaime Bravo. A picador is a bullfighter who uses a special lance called pica while on horseback to test the bull's strength and to provide clues to the matador on which side the bull is favoring.
They perform in the tercio de varas, the first of the three stages in a Spanish bullfight. The shape of the lance or pica is regulated by Spanish law to prevent serious injury to the bull, viewed as unfair cheating in the past; the bull will charge the horses in the ring and, at the moments prior to contact, the picador lances the bull in a large muscle at the back of the neck. The picador continues to stab at the bull's neck leading to the animal's first major loss of blood. During this time, the bull's injured nape will fatigue—however, as a result of the enraged bull charging, the picador's horse will tussle with avoiding the bull throes
Bullfighting is a physical contest that involves humans and animals attempting to publicly subdue, immobilise, or kill a bull according to a set of rules, guidelines, or cultural expectations. There are many different varieties in various locations around the world; some forms involve dancing around or over a cow or bull, or attempting to grasp an object from the animal. The best-known form of bullfighting is Spanish-style bullfighting, a traditional spectacle in countries including Spain, parts of southern France, some Latin American countries. While some forms are sometimes considered to be a blood sport, in some countries, for example Spain, it is defined as an art form or cultural event and relevant regulatory frameworks liken it to other cultural events and heritage. In Spain, toreros are as popular as football stars supported by sponsors and appearing in press. A particular breed of cattle, the Spanish Fighting Bull, is used for this type of bullfighting; these bulls must be bred in large ranches, in conditions as similar as possible to the way they would live in the wild.
There are many historic fighting venues in the Iberian Peninsula and Latin America. The largest venue of its kind is the Plaza México in central Mexico City, which seats 48,000 people, the oldest are the Plazas of Béjar and Ronda, in the Spanish provinces of Salamanca and Málaga. All the bullrings have a complex pricing system, main factors being the sun and shadow, proximity to the action, experience levels of torero; the practice of bullfighting is controversial because of a range of concerns including animal welfare and religion. Bullfighting is illegal in most countries, but remains legal in most areas of Spain and Portugal, as well as in some Hispanic American countries and some parts of southern France. Bullfighting traces its roots to prehistoric bull worship and sacrifice in Mesopotamia and the Mediterranean region; the first recorded bullfight may be the Epic of Gilgamesh, which describes a scene in which Gilgamesh and Enkidu fought and killed the Bull of Heaven. Bull leaping was portrayed in Crete, myths related to bulls throughout Greece.
The killing of the sacred bull is the essential central iconic act of Mithras, commemorated in the mithraeum wherever Roman soldiers were stationed. The oldest representation of what seems to be a man facing a bull is on the Celtiberian tombstone from Clunia and the cave painting El toro de hachos, both found in Spain. Bullfighting is linked to Rome, where many human-versus-animal events were held as competition and entertainment, the Venationes; these hunting games spread to Africa and Asia during Roman times. There are theories that it was introduced into Hispania by the Emperor Claudius, as a substitute for gladiators, when he instituted a short-lived ban on gladiatorial combat; the latter theory was supported by Robert Graves Spanish colonists took the practice of breeding cattle and bullfighting to the American colonies, the Pacific and Asia. In the 19th century, areas of southern and southwestern France adopted bullfighting, developing their own distinctive form. Religious festivities and royal weddings were celebrated by fights in the local plaza, where noblemen would ride competing for royal favor, the populace enjoyed the excitement.
In the Middle Ages across Europe, knights would joust in competitions on horseback. In Spain, they began to fight bulls. In medieval Spain bullfighting was considered a noble sport and reserved to the rich, who could afford to supply and train their animals; the bull was released into a closed arena where a single fighter on horseback was armed with a lance. This spectacle was said to be enjoyed by Charlemagne, Alfonso X the Wise and the Almohad caliphs, among others; the greatest Spanish performer of this art is said to have been the knight El Cid. According to a chronicle of the time, in 1128 "... when Alfonso VII of León and Castile married Berengaria of Barcelona daughter of Ramon Berenguer III, Count of Barcelona at Saldaña among other celebrations, there were bullfights."In the time of Emperor Charles V, Pedro Ponce de Leon was the most famous bullfighter in Spain and a renovator of the technique of killing the bull on a horse with blindfolded eyes. Juan de Quirós, the best Sevillian poet of that time, dedicated to him a poem in Latin, of which Benito Arias Montano transmits some verses.
Francisco Romero, from Ronda, Spain, is regarded as having been the first to introduce the practice of fighting bulls on foot around 1726, using the muleta in the last stage of the fight and an estoc to kill the bull. This type of fighting drew more attention from the crowds, thus the modern corrida, or fight, began to take form, as riding noblemen were replaced by commoners on foot. This new style prompted the construction of dedicated bullrings square, like the Plaza de Armas, round, to discourage the cornering of the action; the modern style of Spanish bullfighting is credited to Juan Belmonte considered the greatest matador of all time. Belmonte introduced a daring and revolutionary style, in which he stayed within a few centimetres of the bull throughout the fight. Although dangerous, his style is still seen by most matadors as the ideal to be emulated. At least five di
Pedro Romero Martínez was a legendary bullfighter from the Romero family in Ronda, Spain. His grandfather Francisco is credited with advancing the art of using the muleta; as a youth he participated in bullfights in Algeciras and in Seville in 1772. In the following year he killed 285 bulls, he fought 5,558 bulls without incurring serious injury before retiring in 1799. He was known as the first matador to present the bullfight as an art form as well as a display of courage. After retiring, Romero was appointed the head of a bullfighting school in Seville. Although the school lasted only from 1830 to 1832, it had an enormous influence where Romero offered his knowledge to matadors-in-training, he is credited with the invention of the classical style of bullfighting in the School of Ronda and Pedro Romero's name is inseparable from the Plaza de Toros. He killed numerous bulls in a bullring in Madrid at the age of eighty the last corrida he fought. Hemingway, in his novel The Sun Also Rises, portrays a young, "beautiful" and artful bullfighter whom he names Pedro Romero after Pedro Romero Martinez.
Romero dynasty List of bullfighters
A muleta is a stick with a red cloth hanging from it, used in the final third of a bullfight. It is different from the cape used by the matador earlier in the fight; the muleta obscures the sword, as in his earlier work with the cape, the bullfighter uses it to attract the bull in a series of passes, demonstrating his control over it. The red color of the muleta is unnecessary, though, as bulls are dichromatic, meaning neither the cape nor the muleta color can be discerned by the bull; the color is retained for tradition. There are a number of distinct styles of pass, each with its own name. With the cape, for instance, the verónica is a pass in which the matador swings the cape away from the charging bull while keeping his feet in the same position; the faena is the final series of passes before the kill, in which the matador uses the muleta to manoeuvre the bull into a position to stab it between the shoulders, cutting the aorta. If this fails he must cut the bull's spinal cord with a second sword, killing it instantly.
The task of killing the bull is given to the matador alone.