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Imaginary portrait of Chintila by Bernardino Montañés in the Museo del Prado. Oil on canvas, 1855

Chintila (Latin: Chintila, Chintilla, Cintila; c. 606 – 20 December 639) was a Visigothic King of Hispania, Septimania and Galicia from 636. He succeeded Sisenand in a time of weakness and reigned until his death.


He was elected and confirmed by a convention of bishops and nobles in accordance with the 75th canon of the Fourth Council of Toledo. With his election, nothing changed and instability reigned. He never solved the many problems that plagued his time in office and, as the chroniclers of the age report, this included rebellions in Septimania and Gallaecia. In the three years of his reign, he permitted the bishops wide authority and they acted as monarchs de facto, if not de jure.

He dedicated his time to councils, the Fifth Council of Toledo in June 636 and the Sixth Council of Toledo in June 638. These meetings covered many topics and legislated many new regulations.

The king had to be chosen from among the nobility; never a tonsurado (cleric), member of the servile classes (peasants), or foreigners. They dictated the penalties for insurrection and determined that property acquired justly by the king could not be confiscated by his successor. Finally, they outlawed non-Catholics within the frontiers of the kingdom, which resulted in many forced conversions.

Chintila died in 639 or 640 of natural causes and was followed by his son Tulga.


Regnal titles
Preceded by
King of the Visigoths
12 March 636 – 20 December 639
Succeeded by