Most Europeans have not exactly appreciated the importance of the contribution they have received from the Islamic civilisation, nor have they understood the nature of what they have taken from this civilisation in the past, and some even completely disregard everything that relates to it. It is strange to see Europeans considered as the direct heirs of civilisation.
The reality drawn from history itself makes it absolutely clear that Greek science and philosophy were transmitted to Europeans by Muslim intermediaries.
The importance of Musulmans in Spain throughout history
In other words, if it were not for the wise men of Islam and their philosophers, the Europeans would have remained in total ignorance of this knowledge for a long time, assuming that they had ever come to know it. Since I am speaking, among other aspects, about the Arabic language, we can see a sure proof of the extension of this same language.
They had an influence in the West, on the existence of terms of origin and Arabic roots much more numerous than is generally believed, incorporated into almost all European languages and whose use has continued to us, although many Europeans who use them are totally unaware of their true origin.
Heritage not to be forgotten
As Ian Gibson says, in his op-ed «A modest proposal», it would be wise to consider Arabic as an essential part of Spain’s national heritage. Among other things Spanish lexicon contains about 4,000 words of Arabic origin (8% of the total), and this without taking into account the tens of thousands of toponyms that mark out the entire territory. It would be logical, sensible, cultured, normal and practical in Spain for Arabic to be considered not only as an essential part of the national heritage, but also to understand its great importance, starting, if you will, with its commercial importance in the contemporary world.
I would even go so far as to say that the Europeans were indebted to them. The reason, the vast cultural legacy they sowed during their long stay. The Muslim presence in the Iberian Peninsula allowed cultural exchange between East and West. For a long time, from the hand of the Arab sages, both the knowledge of the Antiquity as its own discoveries reached al-Andalus, and from there began to spread throughout the continent.