The PioneersThe MilitaryReferences

The Dark Ages

Queen Isabella (1451-1504)

Isabella, surnamed la Catolica, the Catholic, Queen of Castile, was the second child and only daughter of John II of Castile by his second wife Isabella, granddaughter of John I of Portugal. 115 Isabella married Ferdinand of Aragon, known also as Ferdinand V, the Catholic.In 1474 Isabella and Ferdinand jointly succeeded to the throne of Castile and Leon. Isabella's succession was contested, however, by Alfonso V of Portugal, who supported the claim of Henry's daughter Juana la Beltraneja. Alfonso attacked Castile and Leon but was defeated by the Castilian army in 1476. Three years later Ferdinand succeeded to the throne of Aragon. This union of the two main Spanish kingdoms laid the foundation of Spain's future greatness. They had five children, including Catherine of Aragon, the first wife of Henry VIII of England. Isabella and her husband (known together as "The Catholic Kings") 290

Queen Isabella of Spain was the first monarch to organise help for the wounded in Europe in 1484. 116
She is even been reputed to have worn armour as a female knight and accompanied her troops to battle.

It was probably whilst accompaying her Army that she noticed the suffering of the wounded that were left to die on the field of battle.
She arranged for the first movable Hospital to accompany the troops during active operations.She arranged for bedded wagons to carry the casualties to large hospital tents at the end of the battle. 

This all seems quite strange coming from the monarch responsible for the 1478 Spanish Inquisition that brutally tortured and killed thousands of innocent people throughout Christendom. She also along with her husband expelled the Jews and defeated the remaining moors.
She is more famous however for her support of Christopher Columbus, in financing his expedition to the Americas.

In Britain the Caxton  printing press was beginning to produce amongst others, medical textbooks. Hospitals were also on the increase, cities competed with each other for who had the best hospitals with the best doctors.
Andreas Vesalius textbook on anatomy, was one of first to be printed by the Caxton Press. 





Quote 46

"I will assume the undertaking for my own crown of Castile , and am ready to pawn my jewels to defray the expenses of it, if the funds in the treasury should be found inadequate." 117


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