03.08.

1704: British Capture Gibraltar – One of the Most Important Strategic Points in the World

1704: British Capture Gibraltar – One of the Most Important Strategic Points in the World
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 3 August 1704
  • After the British took Gibraltar from the Spanish in 1704, they have managed to keep it to this day (over 310 years).

On this day in 1704 British forces captured Gibraltar, one of the most important strategic points in the entire world.

Gibraltar had been in Spanish hands for over 240 years, back when they took it from Muslim forces in 1462. After the British took Gibraltar from the Spanish in 1704, they have managed to keep it to this day (over 310 years).

Gibraltar was named after the Muslim conqueror Tariq ibn Ziyad, who led the first Muslim invasion of the Iberian Peninsula in 711 (the word “Gibraltar” is derived from the term Jabal Tariq, which means “Tariq’s Hill”).

Due to its strategically important location, Gibraltar has suffered around 10 sieges throughout history. The British who took it on this day were part of a coalition of countries which had united against the Spanish.

This occurred during the War of Spanish Succession, during which the houses of Habsburg and Bourbon, probably the two most powerful royal dynasties in European history, vied for control over the Spanish crown.

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