God Bless Those Who Take The Broken Roads That Lead To The Alhambra

In Granada Spain the Palace Alhambra is a historical spectacle that has been in existence for over a thousand years.  Vamos A Ver!

The Alhambra

On a rocky hill that is difficult to access, on the banks of the River Darro, protected by mountains and surrounded by woods, among the oldest quarters in the city, the Alhambra rises up like an impressive castle with walls and a mote that prevent the outside world from seeing the delicate beauty they enclose.

Originally designed as a military area, the Alhambra became the residence of royalty and of the court of Granada in the middle of the thirteenth century, after the establishment of the Nasrid Kingdom and the construction of the first palace, by the founder king Mohammed bin Yusuf bin Nasr, better known as Alhamar.

Throughout the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries, the fortress became a citadel with high walls and defensive towers, which house two main areas: the military area, or Alcazaba, the barracks of the royal guard, and the medina or court city, the location of the famous Nasrid Palaces and the remains of the houses of the noblemen who lived there. The Charles V Palace which was built after the city was taken by the Catholic Monarchs in 1492 is also in the medina.

Calligraphic Decoration:

The walls of the Alhambra are full of calligraphic decoration, cursive and kufic writings with sentences such as “Only God is victor” (apparently by Zawi ben Zirí, founder of the Nasrid dynasty) and poems by three poets of the Court of Granada, Ibn al-Yayyab (1274-1349), Ibn al-Jatib (1313-1375) and Ibn Zamrak(1333-1393), who were secretaries of the royal chancellery and prime ministers. Among them, Ibn Zamrak is considered to be the most brilliant of the poets of the Alhambra.

The Walls of Alhambra

Poetry:

Here I will share a passage from one of my favorite poems of the Alhambra:

Poem in the Hall of the Two Sisters

I am a garden adorned by beauty:

My being will know whether you look at my beauty.

Oh, Mohammed, my king, I try to equal

The noblest thing that has ever existed or will ever exist.

Sublime work of art, fate wants me to outshine every other moment in history. How much delight for the eyes!

Viva Espana!

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