The narrative of the discovery is also done in a legendary way: In the days of Alfonso II el Casto, an anchorite named Pelayo, near the village of Solovio, witnessed luminaries in the forest of Libredón where he lived, receiving in dreams the oracle of the angels that these lights announced the remains of the Apostle. The faithful who shared the knowledge of the phenomenon informed Bishop Teodomiro, who, on account of his testimony, showed up at the scene, and surprised by the finding, ordered the retinue to keep three days of fasting, after which he opened a breach in the forest to see what it contained, and discovered in the middle of the thicket, a small building with an altar, inside which he discovered a larger tomb and two smaller ones that flanked it, which identifies as the Sepulchral tomb of the Apostle James and his disciples Athanasius and Theodore.
Teodomiro’s reaction, far from being precipitated, can be valued as serene, since the situation could raise him almost to the same rank as the Bishop of Rome, as the bones of an Apostle chosen by the Lord lay in his seat; could project a trip to the Rome of Leon III, or to the Carolingian empire that then was under the command of “Ludovico Pío”. It is a criterion that tells us that more than the result of a magnificent find, seeks to make known a hidden news that wants to protect. He avoided grandiloquent attitudes and merely reported to his king, Alfonso II, monarch of the Asturian kingdom, who fought for subsistence rather than historical greatness. The Asturian reaction was not so rapid as it is often said, but it should be noted that it was very measured and studied, for in Oviedo, founded by King Fruela I in the eighth century, there was already a venerated pre-Romanesque temple whose holy chamber kept valuable relics where The Savior was worshiped. The Jacobean find must have aroused a feeling of moral competence and a legitimate doubt of the authenticity of the finding. That is why the Asturian official chronicles were discreet. Finally the find seems to have convinced the monarch, who organized a trip with the court to the tomb discovered, and ordered to build in 834, several years after the find, a church that hosted the mausoleum. This journey of the monarch from Oviedo to Compostela will be considered as the first official pilgrimage to the holy place, generating what we now call the Primitive Way. Rather it seems that Teodomiro presented arguments that demonstrated to the monarch his certainty in the finding, and this one ends up recognizing it. It will not do so by raising a large temple, but a modest basilica of stone and mud with a single nave, next to which the churches of San Salvador and of San Juan, the monastery of Antealtares and the episcopal palace, With a wall defining an enclosure that constituted the Locus Sanctus Iacobi.
After the reigns of Ramiro I and Ordoño I, king Alfonso III during the episcopate of Sisnando I, demolished the primitive church and had erected a bigger and sumptuous one, of three ships, in carved stone and with columns and marble floors, whose works began in 872 and were consecrated in 899. Later, Sisnando II, before the successive attacks Norman, reinforces with more solidity the primitive wall of the Locus. This will be the architectural ensemble that will destroy Almanzor in 997. The two Asturian basilicas, very different in size and inversion of materials, have one thing in common: to keep the Roman tomb mausoleum at the head. Both are born to guard the Jacobean tomb.
There are authors who interpret the Jacobean phenomenon as an ecclesiastical initiative in the service of the Reconquest, and consider that the sepulchral find is the result of Opportunism: a military opportunism, for which everything would be a montage at the service of the Reconquest, and ecclesiastical opportunism for which everything would to be a montage in the service of the Church.
Military opportunism, often wielded, is as apparent as inconsistent, since Santiago was already a cause of worship in the north of Spain and considered a protective patron more than fifty years before the discovery of his burial, and because between the beginning of the Reconquista (about 722) and the time of the Inventio (about 829), it takes more than a century, and it will take seven more centuries to complete.
The “fabulous” battle of Clavijo, allegedly fought in 844 during the reign of Ramiro I, entails such manipulation of data and interests that make it a historical falsehood. The supposed affront begins in the tribute of one hundred maidens supposedly acquired by the king Mauregato with the Muslims in exchange to avoid bellicose contests. The glory of the triumph was due to the miraculous help of the Apostle Santiago, Matamoros since then, who announced to the king in dreams his favorable intervention on white horse and silver sword, that would lead them to victory, and in gratitude the king establishes a tribute ( Vote of Santiago). Sánchez Albornoz demonstrates that this battle did not exist, and that the real battle was fought at Monte-Laturce, in Albelda, won a few years later by Ordoño I, without the tribute of maidens, nor miraculous intervention, nor vote for Santiago. Ramiro II, rey de Castilla y León, que con una peregrinación a Compostela invocó la protección del Apóstol, fue quien concedió el voto a Santiago después de la batalla de Simancas en 939, en la que Ramiro II, asistido por sus condes Fernán González Y Assur Fernández, lograron una sólida victoria sobre las tropas de Abderramán III. Santiago becomes an emblem and harangue for the troops, in an isolated and unsuccessful way within this extensive process of centuries, where he is not even the only one that bears the pedigree of matamoros; the kingdom of Leon invokes Isidore of Seville (buried in Leon) and make him ride alongside the Christians of the kingdom of Leon, while the Castilians invoke and do the same with San Millán de la Cogolla, according to Cluniac tradition prior to the discovery of the tomb, And each army has its patron to which it pays tribute in the form of Vote, with litigation that was settled in the high courts, and Santiago arrived only to be imposed at the end of century XIV, with the Reconquista already very advanced that it gives rise to an Imperial Spain whose “wars divinales” find an adequate standard. Even in the seventeenth century, San Millán is again proclaimed Patron of Castile, and copatron of Spain, and at this time it is proposed to grant the patronage of Spain to Santa Teresa instead of Santiago. Invoking the myth of Santiago matamoros as a montage pro-reconquista is an illusion that contributed much to the legacy of the artistic heritage but had nothing to do with the origin of the Tradition Jacobean.
For Sánchez Albornoz the Reconquista had nothing of holy war, because it did not obey to the fulfillment of a precept in the way that proposed the Islam, nor was understood like form of death martyr. Nor can it be understood as a crusade because it was not carried out with religious motivations such as the recovery of foci of religious value, nor the extension of a creed. Although the reconquest began in the peripheral communities of the Visigothic kingdom of Toledo (Astures, Cantabria …), with traditional resistance to being subjugated, in the Hispanic territories of the north merges with the interests of the fugitive Goths of the battle of Guadalete (711) before the Berber troops of North Africa that crossed Gibraltar to the control of Tariq and Muza, by means of the Count Don Julian before the dynastic conflict by the crown of Witiza. The aid becomes an invasion, and in only four years, without resistance, by peaceful capitulations, transactions and friendly pacts, and only sometimes by military force, they seize almost the entire peninsula. Don Pelayo will be the creator of the fusion of the rebellion of the peoples of the north with the patriotic motivation of the fugitive visigodos and agglutinates a unique movement that, perhaps from diverse feelings, finally are grouped in a common front. Thus, since the founding of Oviedo in the eighth century, the Reconquest has as identifiable objectives in the chronicles, the expulsion of the Muslims as usurpers of the Visigoth, and the restoration of the Visigothic kingdom, which had already achieved the desired territorial unity between 476 And 711. The intact Visigothic identity soon resumed a process of reinstatement, and not for doctrinal but patriotic motivation. Thus, it is inconsistent to think that more than a century after its beginning, recourse was had to the farce of a spectacular tomb to encourage the Reconquest.
Ecclesiastical opportunism has even less foundation because the Jacobean Tradition, contrary to what is usually heard, was not created by the Church to the measure of its own interests, but was the first to adopt a critical attitude, and Rome ignored Long time to Compostela. At the end of the tenth century the Hispano-Visigothic church, considered rude and ignorant, had little prestige in Rome, in contrast to the celebrity of Santiago, cited in the Muslim chronicles as the most important Christian sanctuary in Hispania, attended by pilgrims from all Parts of Europe, including Rome. Here begins a latent rivalry between Santiago and Rome that will take its first executive channel in the Roman initiative to abolish the Visigothic rite and replace it with the Roman. In the middle of the eleventh century, Rome is concerned with the growing preponderance of the Church in Santiago and the bishop of Iria Cresconio (1037-1066) awakens the Rome a deep concern to deal more with arms and militias than in the pastoral questions, by the high dominion over other Hispanic bishoprics with power ceded by the kings and military prestige that chronicles the chronicles, and especially for nominating itself as episcopis lriensi apostolicae sedis. All this was done with incidents that were understood as gestures of contempt towards legates sent by Rome in matters of protocol of reception, as well as some statements that sounded dissidents, the suspicion became an accusation of arrogance and pride, and for the risk of schism Ecclesiastic, Leo IX, at the Council of Reims in 1049, excommunicates Cresconius for being awarded the title of bishop of the apostolic see, which is understood from Rome as an excessive ambition of the primacy of the Hispanic Church and an equal treatment towards Rome. At the same time as the excommunication, several canons were imposed that affected the old Hispanic church, in particular the one of “Gallaecia”.
But although the arguments of opportunism are unfounded, the discourse leaves its mark and in relation to Santiago the critics they take anti-jacobeo party, and it comes to question the historicity of Teodomiro to which it is come to consider a fictitious personage for the occasion, and The previous existence of Compostela is denied, which is considered a city created in the ninth century to “place” an invented tomb in it, and unleashes the unnecessary dilemma of whether Compostela is a montage at the service of military and ecclesiastical interests.
It is true, and it should be pointed out, that Santiago is handled with several well-intentioned intentions, which may suggest to be a montage in which many gain benefit: the military gets delivery in the fight; Kings and politicians gain land conquered; The monks achieve promotion of the pilgrimage that elevates the donations and privileges; The prelates achieve fiscal benefits and economic favors; The Church acquires devotees and a dignified alternative to the Holy Land …. These interests, often behind the most petty human attitudes, dirty the Jacobean Tradition in the manner they did the merchants of the Temple of Jerusalem. But these were never generative motives, but attitudes that profit from an earlier phenomenon that is not the result of an opportunistic montage or a simple error; If it were, the history and the archeology they would have detected it, and there is no such thing. It can not be accepted that Compostela was the fruit of a multidisciplinary super-confabulation, a supra-historical plot, in which the favorable documentary data lack rigor or are falsifications, the necessity and opportunity of relics of the first order are sufficient reason for them to be aligned on the same side: monks, prelates, politicians, kings, soldiers, men of science, pilgrims of every condition, and the attitudes, and documents of people of different Historical moments, they are interested, or false, or mistaken, or manipulated. And all are able to coordinate a lie over the centuries transmitting to perfection slogans that conceal the montage without loopholes, undetectable to archeology, without today it is possible to deny. Already only this situation has so much argument, that even without being demonstrative, it keeps much persuasion in favor of the Jacobean Tradition.
It would be very little if this were all, but there is much more.