The Chronicles of Spain: A Discussion of Some Trends in Spanish History Found in the Chronicles of Hydatius of Lemica, John of Biclaro, Isidore of Seville, and the Chronicle of Zaragoza
By Gary W. Johnson
BA Thesis: The University of Queensland, 1993
This thesis intends to examine four chronicles from fifth, sixth, and early seventh century Spain and discuss the different approaches to the history of that period that the chronicles of Hydatius of Lemica, John of Biclaro, Isidore of Seville, and the Chronicle of Zaragoza display. Firstly, each of the writers will be discussed in turn, along with the implications of their choice to use the format of a chronicle to record the past. Then, their sources of information will be examined, because all four chronicles do not have access to the same quantity of information from parts of the world other than Spain. After these matters are dealt with, we will analyse the way in which changing political and social realities affect the presentation of historical events in our chronicles, including the use of appropriate technical terms. Finally, the treatment of religious issues will be examined, and once again we will see how the changes of their times altered the style of these chronicles. In all of this, it is apparent that attitudes in Spain to the recent past changed during this period, because of the political, religious, economic, and social upheavals caused by the disappearance of the Roman Empire in Spain and the rise of the kingdom of the Visigoths.