Through My Lens: Mezquita de Córdoba

Mezquita

For the Fourth Sunday of Lent, I’m posting a photo of the interior of the Mezquita de Córdoba. The Mezquita is a cathedral built inside a mosque built on top of a church. Given that back-and-forth heritage, it’s often called the Mezquitacatedral de Córdoba (the MosqueCathedral of Córdoba).

The original church, the Basilica of Saint Vincent, was built by the Visigoths in the sixth century. When the Moors arrived in Córdoba in the late eighth century, they built a mosque on top of that basilica. The main prayer hall of the Mezquita (shown in this photo) is filled with an impressive forest of columns supporting 400 red-and-white double arches. Even today, it is one of the largest mosques in the world.

After the Reconquista (reconquest) of Córdoba in 1236 by the northern Christian kingdoms, the mosque was reconsecrated as a Christian church. Eventually, the minaret was turned into a bell tower and a Renaissance cathedral nave was built in the middle of the mosque. Stay tuned ― next Sunday I’ll post a photo of that nave.

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