September 17 Picture of the Day—Alhambra

We spent the afternoon walking around Alhambra, the city-within-a-city above Granada.

Note the Moorish arches, decorative plasterwork and splendid view.

Note the Moorish arches, decorative plasterwork and splendid view.

Alhambra is a fascinating mix of Moorish and Western, and tracks the various conquests and reconquests of this part of Spain. The most famous part of Alhambra is the Palacios Nazaries, the Moorish palace built in the 1300s by Sultan Mohammed V. After seeing so many churches, palaces, castles, and other buildings in Europe it was surprising to see architecture that is so entirely non-western. Immediately next door is the Palace of Charles V, who reasserted himself after the so-called “re-conquest” and built a grandiose Renaissance-style palace—an architectural exclamation point of sorts. In order to make room for Charles V’s palace, they actually demolished part of the Palacios Nazaries. So much for cultural heritage. Sigh.

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