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Ximénez de Rada, Rodrigo


Reforming archbishop of Toledo, statesman, and historian; b. Navarre, before 1171; d. June 10, 1247. He was the son of a Navarrese noble and a graduate of Bologna and Paris; he became bishop elect of Osma and archbishop of Toledo in 1208. Rodrigo was chief adviser to ferdinand iii of Castile, participating in the victory over the Moors at Las Navas de Tolosa in 1212 and thereafter in the reconquest, repopulation, and ecclesiastical organization of Andalusia. He attended lateran council IV in 1215 and introduced its reforms into Castile, preaching the crusade, holding synods, reforming the clergy, and sending missions to Morocco. He was a protector of the Jews, and a papal legate in Spain for ten years. For his see he secured the chancellorship of Castile (1230), the primacy of Spain (1239), and spiritual jurisdiction over La Mancha (1243). In 1227 he began to build the present cathedral and the archbishop's palace. He encouraged such scholars as Michael Scot, Diego García, and Mark of Toledo. His Historia Gothica, learned and nationalistic, based on Christian and Muslim documentary and epic sources, is a model for subsequent histories of Spain. Rodrigo wrote other histories, including the unpublished Breviarium historiae catholicae.

Bibliography: f. a. lorenzana y buitron, ed., SS. PP. Toletanorum opera, 4 v. (MadridRome 178297) v.3. e. de aguilera y gamboa, El arzobispo D. Rodrigo Ximénez de Rada y el monasterio de Santa María de Huerta (Madrid 1908). j. gorosterratzu, Don Rodrigo Jiménez de Rada (Pamplona 1925). e. estella, El fundador de la catedral de Toledo (Toledo 1926). d. mansilla reoyo, Iglesia castellanoleonesa y Curia romana en los tiempos del rey san Fernando (Madrid 1945).

[d. w. lomax]

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