Monday, June 10, 2013

Alhambra----WOW

Day Three  Morning Alhambra

Oh Wow!  I will try to give some description to the Alhambra as it really impressed me.
Three thoughts struck me regarding the Alhambra.
1.  Water was very important then as it is now.
2. Cultures grow and change based on other cultures.
3.  Politics have not really changed from then to now.  We just have a different way of stating things.

The Alhambra was first built as a walled city.  Much of that old wall still stands.  In 1280, Mohammad I had an aqueduct system built that went from the foothills of the Sierra Nevada to the Generalife Area which is today a garden.
The distant Sierra Nevada Range from whence the water comes.
This water was directed throughout the palaces under different rulers.  It was considered on of the earmarks of great wealth, it heated the floors of the Alhambra, it was used in the bathhouses, and irrigated the plant life therein.  It is the answer to the question of why did the Alhambra appeal to so many different rulers regardless of religion or place of origin.
An irrigation ditch in the gardens
Piping to one of the water ponds.
Ancient method of releasing steam which was used to heat the floors...Roman technology improved upon by the Moors.
The lions fountain which is the symbolism of the blending of Islam and Christianity.
This pool is in front of the king's palace.  All this water greatly impressed the Arabic world with their dry conditions.


Water appeared in nearly every window.  This proved how rich the Islamic Rulers were.    
The next thing that impressed me was the colors and intricate work in all of the palaces.

 The colors of the mosiac tiles are centuries and centuries old.

The center pattern represents the eight heavens of Allah.   One dot in the center and the seven that are yellow around it.  

The blending of cultures (both by military force and by peaceful interaction) is so obvious in this structure.  It shows the strength of the land over man since without the water none of these buildings that form the Alhambra would have been built.

Tonight we take a walking tour of the Albaicin and see a Flamenco show.  It will be blogged later I think.  We ate a late lunch in our rented apt.



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