Ferdinand III, Spanish king of Castile and León

Ferdinand III, 1199–1252, Spanish king of Castile (1217–52) and León (1230–52), son of Alfonso IX of León and Berenguela of Castile. At the death (1217) of her brother, Henry I of Castile, Berenguela renounced her right of succession in Ferdinand's favor. Having inherited (1230) León from his father, Ferdinand permanently united the kingdoms of Castile and León. Ferdinand spent most of his reign crusading against the Moors. He took Córdoba (1236), Jaén (1246), and Seville (1248) and occupied Murcia (1243). He thus completed the reconquest of Spain, except for the kingdom of Granada, which became a vassal state. Ferdinand was planning an expedition to Morocco when he died and was succeeded by his son, Alfonso X. In 1671, Ferdinand was canonized by the Roman Catholic Church. Feast: May 30.

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