Unknown. Mezquita-Catedral de Córdoba. c 600-1598. (Photo by JW Bailly CC BY 4.0)


Cordoba (Corduba) was founded by the Romans in the 2nd century BC and made the capital of Baetica, one of the Roman provinces in Hispania. Then in the 10th century BC, Cordoba would fall under Muslim rule and would be established as the headquarters of the independent caliphate by Abd ar-Rhaman III. With this long sustained Muslim rule, Cordoba went through a great transformation with the construction of over 300 mosques, Islamic palaces, public buildings, observatories, aqueducts, libraries and universities. Then, in 1236, Fernando III of Castilla captured Cordoba and the city went through a process of removing Islam and replacing it with Christianity. The best way to see this history today is through the Mezquita-Catedral de Cordoba.

Cordoba as a UNESCO Site

” The Historic Centre of Cordoba creates the perfect urban and landscape setting for the Mosque. It reflects thousands of years of occupation by different cultural groups – Roman, Visigoth, Islam, Judaism and Christian-, that all left a mark. This area reflects the urban and architectural complexity reached during the Roman era and the splendour of the great Islamic city, which, between the 8th and the 10th centuries, represented the main urban and cultural focus in the western world. “-UNESCO

The city of Cordoba was declared a United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage site in 1984. The site encompasses the streets and homes surrounding the famous Mezquita-Catedral de Cordoba, the Mezquita-Catedral itself, el Alcazar de los Reyes Cristianos, as well as the grand Roman bridge over the Guadalquivir river. Every year approximately 1.5 million people visit the Mezquita-Catedral due to its monumental size and historic significance.

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