The Mezquita, or Mosque of Córdoba, is one of the real wonders of Spain. Along with the Alhambra of Granada and the Alcazar of Sevilla, it makes up the trifecta of Moorish architecture left over from when the Muslims controlled the Iberian peninsula.
Regrettably, after the Reconquest of Córdoba by the Christian forces, the Christians eventually decided to repurpose the huge elegant mosque into a Christian cathedral, including filling in nearly all the niches around its interior walls with chapels and adding many sculptured scenes from the Christian stories as reliefs in the arches.
But, luckily all was not lost. The original effect of the geometry of the pillars and arches is still apparent in many vistas. Although those vistas are always cut short by the Christian intrusions, you can still get the idea of what the huge space must have looked like when the view down the rows of arches was uninterrupted and seemed to go on forever.
But the lost long view is redeemed somewhat by the preservation of a few of the original elements. There's a bit of inlaid wood ceiling here, and the Mihrab, or prayer niche in one side of the mosque was left alone to provide a spectacular counterpoint to the intrusion of the Christian church.
The Mezquita of Córdoba and the old center of the city is a Unesco World Heritage site. Here's a list of all the Unesco sites in Spain.
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