Alfonso X the Learned. VI.
His most important historical works were his La Primera Crónica General de España
followed by the General Estoria, the former commencing with Moses and ending with
the Romans, Begun in 1270, each chapter of the General Estoria occupies scarcely a
whole page. It relates the history of Iberia up to the Punic wars, using a mixture of biblical
history, including Hebrew and Arabic texts, Greek and Latin mythology plus curious geographical
descriptions – Britain, for example, is derived from the name Brutus, Julius Caesar founded Seville,
a third Hercules changed the name of the peninsula from Esperis to Espanna.
Alfonso intended the Bible to be read in a language other than Latin and with unexpurgated texts.
Some passages were even liable to charges of heresy according to the views of that time,
particularly those that included Islamic or Hebrew legends or apocrypha and, there is little doubt
that it is for this reason that the last volumes are missing. Indeed the king himself was accused of
heresy and this may have been a contributing factor to his overthrow by his heir Sancho with the
assistance of almost all the bishops.