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Aznar Sánchez, Lord of Larraun, and Onneca Fortunez
Aznar Sanchez. Lord of Larraun [Familytree].
Son of SANCHO, Lord of Pamplona. (S1).
Larraun (Laron) is a town and municipality located in the province and autonomous community of Navarre, northern Spain.
He married Onneca Fortunez. (S2).
Onneca Fortunez. (Iniga Fortúnez). [Familytree].
Born about 848; daughter of Fortún Garcés, King of Pamplona, and Oria]. (S2,S3)
Onneca Fortúnez was a Basque princess from the Kingdom of Pamplona, later known as the Kingdom of Navarre. At the time of Onneca's birth, which occurred between 848 and 850, the Iberian Peninsula was largely under the domination of the Muslim Umayyad dynasty. Only the northern kingdoms of Asturias and Pamplona remained under Christian rule, perpetuating the Hispano-Roman Visigothic traditions. Onneca was a member of the Íñiguez dynasty, named after her great-grandfather Íñigo Arista, who founded the Kingdom of Pamplona. (S3).
Biographical details about her come from two main sources: the Roda Codex and the accounts of Muslim Andalusian historians, who refer to Onneca by the Arabic name Durr, meaning pearl. Onneca's historical importance stems from the fact that she provided an important genealogical link between the Muslim caliphs of Córdoba and the Christian kings of Pamplona, as well as between the first two royal dynasties of Pamplona. Onneca is known for marrying into the Umayyad dynasty. Although matrimonial unions between Christian slave-concubines and Muslim rulers were common, Onneca's case is one of the few examples of a Christian princess marrying into Muslim royalty. Her marriage created family ties between the Christian and Muslim ruling families of the Iberian peninsula, initially leading to close collaboration between the Christian House of Íñiguez and the Muslim Umayyads. The political effects resulting from Onneca's marriages continued to be felt long after her death, which occurred at an unknown date. (S3).
Marriage to Emir Abdullah
Onneca's father Fortún Garcés, the then heir to the throne of Pamplona, was captured in 860 in the town of Milagro during a punitive expedition led by Muhammad I, the Muslim emir of Córdoba, against the small Kingdom of Pamplona. The expedition resulted in the devastation of the Christian kingdom's territory and the seizure of three castles by the Muslim forces. Fortun Garcés, nicknamed al-Anqar by the Muslims because he was one-eyed, was taken to Córdoba where he was detained for two decades in gilded captivity. Onneca accompanied or followed her father to Córdoba, where she was wedded to Muhammad I's son Abdullah around 862-863. It is not known when or how she came to Córdoba. She may have been captured with her father, or sent to join her father at the emir's court at a later date. Onneca was presumably still a teenager when she bore Abdullah a son named Muhammad in 864. As Abdullah's wife, Onneca became known as Durr. According to some sources, she converted to Islam. (S3).
In addition to Muhammad, Onneca bore Abdullah two daughters: al-Baha' and Fatima the Younger. Abdullah became emir in 888, and Onneca's son Muhammad was named heir to the throne. However, Muhammad was assassinated by his younger half-brother al-Mutarrif on 28 January 891. There is disagreement among historians as to whether al-Mutarrif acted on his own or at the instigation of his father Abdullah. Al-Mutarrif himself was beheaded in 895 under orders of his father. As a result, Muhammad's son Abd-ar-Rahman, who was born three weeks prior to his father's assassination, was the one who succeeded his grandfather Abdullah as emir of Córdoba. Known in the West as Abd-ar-Rahman III, he later elevated himself to the position of caliph. (S3).
Onneca was thus the paternal grandmother of Abd-ar-Rahman III, who inherited from her as well as from his mother Muzna hailing from the Pyrenees (probably a Basque) European facial features such as blue eyes and light reddish hair that he attempted to alter (notably through hair coloring) in order to look more typically Arab. (S3).
Marriage to Aznar Sánchez de Laron
In about 880, after two decades in Córdoba, Onneca abandoned her Muslim family, and returned with her father to Pamplona, to which he would shortly succeed. Shortly after her return, Onneca married her first cousin Aznar Sánchez de Laron. Together they had a son and two daughters, probably born between 880 and 890: Sancho, Toda and Sancha. Their son Sancho Aznar is only known from the Roda Codex genealogies and may have died young. Their daughters Toda and Sancha would both become queens consort of Pamplona by marrying into the Jiménez dynasty, which came to power in 905 after displacing Onneca's father Fortún Garcés from the throne. Toda married Sancho I Garcés, thus uniting the royal houses of Íñiguez and Jiménez. Toda's sister Sancha was wedded to Sancho I Garcés' brother and successor Jimeno Garcés, and was later killed in France by her son García Jiménez. (S3).
The Roda Codex, the sole source for Onneca's Christian marriage, places this union with her cousin Aznar Sánchez de Laron before her marriage, as a widow, to Abdullah of Córdoba. Based on this, French historian Évariste Lévi-Provençal developed a chronology for Onneca's life that placed her birth date around 835. Lévi-Provençal believed that Onneca did not accompany her father when he returned to Pamplona in 882, either because she had already died, or because she had converted to Islam and chose to remain in Abdullah's harem. However, such a chronology is problematic since it implies that Onneca's children by Aznar were born before or only shortly after her father's capture in 860, thus making Onneca's daughter Toda Aznárez a sexagenarian at the time of her son García Sánchez I's birth (which is known to have occurred in either 919 or 922), and nearly a centenarian at the time of her 958 visit to Cordoba. Therefore, most historians addressing the question have concluded that the Roda Codex was in error with regard to the order of Onneca's two marriages. (S3).
Onneca died after 890. (S3).
CHILDREN of Aznar Sánchez, Lord of Larraun, and Onneca Fortunez:
- Sancho. probably died young.
- Toda Aznárez. [Familytree]. She married Sancho I, King of Pamplona.
- Sancha Aznárez, wife of king Jimeno Garcés, who was brother of Sancho I.
- [S1]. García Íñiguez of Pamplona. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garc%C3%ADa_%C3%8D%C3%B1iguez_of_Pamplona. QUOTES as sources:
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- Lacarra de Miguel, José María. "Textos navarros del Códice de Roda". Estudios de Edad Media de la Corona de Aragon. 1:194-283 (1945).
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- Lévi-Provençal, Évariste and Emilio García Gómez. "Textos inéditos del Muqtabis de Ibn Hayyan sobre los orígines del Reino de Pamplona". Al-Andalus. 19:295-315 (1954).
- Mello Vaz de São Payo, Luiz. "A Ascendência de D. Afonso Henriques". Raízes & Memórias 6:23-57 (1990).
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- Nykl 1974, pp. 6–7
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- [S3]. Onneca Fortúnez. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onneca_Fort%C3%BAnez. QUOTES as sources:
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- Collins, Roger (1999). "The Spanish kingdoms". In Reuter, Timothy. The New Cambridge Medieval History. Volume III: c. 900 – c. 1024. Cambridge University Press. pp. 670–691. ISBN 978-0-521-36447-8.
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