CORDOBA MOSQUE OR CATHEDRAL.
Description in “It Instructor” very interesting for its objectivity.
AI bderraman top construction of this famous Mezquita, but death prevented him from completing the work, leaving his son and successor Histuun commissioned and means for the company according to the plan originally adopted, and in the year 800 It was concluded. They were later added other adjacent buildings by the successors Caliphs to leave it in the condition in which they found
while the Spanish reconquest. Is something singular thing that the Romans had the same spot Elected to erijir in it the temple of Janus, which was destroyed by the Goths stood on their ruins a Christian church, and razed by the Mohammedans built this mosque, four centuries later was converted into a Catholic cathedral, so that nature seems to have intended that terrain to serve Gentiles worshiping, Early Christians, Muslims and Roman Catholics; and whether they have always been a temple of the first order, because in the opinion of the Muslim Mosque Cordova not ceded in greatness and holiness but the d 'Mecca.
The floor of the building is square, 620 feet” long, Á Norte Sur, and 440 width, East to west, separate from all other building, and four elegant streets on all four sides. The walls are formed of squared edges, and the northern front covered with exquisite stucco ornaments. In front of the main gate there are six beautiful columns of jasper, and in front of these is a gallery 180 feet long, I surrounded by three angles with a beautiful portico supported by 72 columns, and in the middle is the courtyard adorned with orange, lime, palms, and sources with beautiful suppliers. A sleek tower, of seventeen yards wide on each side, stands to one side to a height corresponding to the thickness, with 14 adorned with columns of red marble balconies and black. This tower ends in a considerable number of small arcs, Scallop-shaped columns suportados, which with balconies reach the number of 100. Doors, according to the original design were twenty-one, all covered with rich bronze work best Andalucia; but now no more than seventeen doors, and only five serve as entrance to public.
Entering the mosque are presented to the view ten nine ships, from norte á on, which are cut by seventeen ships under east to west, Ships divided by 850 columns of the richest marbles ; the number of columns inside the temple, on the porch and tower, comes to 1,100, a set that there is no other example in building worldwide. The dimensions of these columns inside are not equal, varying from half past two to four yards, because it would have been very difficult to remove from the quarries such a multitude of equal columns in one piece; but varying the bases in proportion to height, the capitals, which are generally of the order Corinthian, -quedan leveled. The main door to the Makmra or sanctuary was covered with gold foil, also the wall of the chancel or Mthrab for exclusive use of Kiumet or priests; and in a tabernacle of gold with pearls and rubies seamed, the master copy was deposited Al Koram, bible Mohometanos, and foundation of Islam. The pulpit from where the Al Faqu'u law or Doctors esplicaban, was una weird work,being made of the richest woods known at that time, and ensure Arab writers who spent seven years in the making. Eleven thousand lamps, two hundred and eighty hanging chandeliers, illuminated the interior of the mosque, consuming 11 quintals of cotton and 1100 pounds of oil per year, with lots of incense and other perfumes. The number of employees in the mosque, including priests, Readers deacons, janitors, &c. passed from 300. Such was the mosque at time of Arab, according to the relations of contemporary writers.
Cordova conquered by Castellanos, the mosque was converted into a cathedral, and preserved its old plan from 1236 up 1528, when Charles V allowed the council to make some alterations, which have been continued disfiguring this noble work of Arabian architecture singular, to make it more adapted to the celebration of the rites of the Catholic religion, so different from those for which it was built.
The most visible mutilation that has made the council was, the erijir an immense choir in the center it rising as another church interior, and deprived of all points of view as estraordinario quadrangle. ” If this choir had been erected in the center of another church,” says a learned traveler, ” Serious worthy of praise for the Gothic grandeur of the plan, the elevation of the dome, carving chairs, and elegance of ornaments; but middle of a Moorish mosque is inappropriate, it destroys the unity of design, darken the rest wrapped in confusion and the idea of the overall effect should cause the building.”
As to the effect that the first sight of this mosque is the eye of the beholder, will copy here the expressions of several travelers. ” Here lies one,” says an anonymous, “in a perfect forest of columns, formed in parallel rows so admires.” ” Nothing,” says another, ” may be more surprising that the first step taken in this building more singular than beautiful. I think there can shop more estraordinaria look that presented to the eye when one is placed on a site of this church from where you can see the ships in the length at right angles; and no less wonderful is the appearance when the rows of columns and arches looking at an oblique line. It is the most confused scene you can imagine.” Mr. Inglis said that the view of the interior of this church is curious, but not beautiful or surprising ; ” the main interest comes from the knowledge we gain by Eira structure é inside a mosque; and is prescindimos of interest, observe no more than a maze of small columns without order and elegance.” The Captain Cook speaks generally Mosque, and says, ” Even in its altered state is the greatest curiosity of architecture in Europe; the effect that causes the intersection of twenty- nine rows of columns, with other nineteen; the dark light, barely enough to distinguish the distance; the strange effect of these colonnades being understood 620 feet on one side and 440 other, with height only 30 feet, can not be described, It is one thing to none.”
We have given these different opinions to our readers, comparing them to each other, can form an idea for themselves.
As to just say esterior, that no more than a more or less high wall on four fronts, great strength of, ending with forked battlements, and supported at intervals by stirrups to distance them resemble towers. Each face differs from another not only in height but decorations, which is attributable to two causes: -the passion of Arab estremada the variety, and inequality terrain, being necessary to climb thirty steps to enter the mosque by the south side, and down fourteen down the north side.
Source: It Instructor, pg.80