The courtyard of the lions

Courtyard of the Lions

Si we are going to visit GranadaOne of the first things we have to see without a doubt is the Alhambra. Within it there are places that stand out above others, such as the popular Patio de los Leones, which we are going to know in more detail. This beautiful courtyard is recognized by everyone, although not everyone knows its symbolism or the importance it has.

Traveling to Granada is a great experience, as this city was a historical enclave of great importance. Proof of this is the incredible Alhambra, built during the Nasrid era, when the Kingdom of Granada was established. Within this fortress and dwelling is the beautiful Courtyard of the Lions, which belonged to the private zone.

History of the Court of the Lions

This beautiful patio was commissioned by Mohammed V during his second term, when he wanted to have the Palace of the Lions in which this courtyard with the famous fountain is framed. This happened in the XNUMXth century. In this courtyard the Nasrid styles of the moment are synthesized, being a culminating time. The most curious thing about the matter is that the studies that have been carried out on the fountain indicate that the lions that support it date from the XNUMXth century, so they even predate the construction of the Alhambra itself. This leads to believe that they were transferred from another place directly to add them to this courtyard, although it is not known exactly where they may come from.

Courtyard symbolism

Fountain of the lions

This courtyard is said to represent in a way the islamic paradise. They have great symbolic value and their main element is water, which becomes the protagonist. It has a rectangular plan, which represents the cosmos. You can see four axes that lead to the fountain and that cross the entire patio, which can represent the cardinal points or the four rivers of paradise. They all come together in the center, where the fountain rises, which would symbolize the universe or divinity.

The Fountain of the Lions

This source is one of the most significant pieces and important of the Alhambra. It has attracted the attention of historians because the representation of animal figures is not very frequent in Islamic art and less than this size. In addition, knowing its date of creation they have created even more hypotheses about its true origin. This fountain also stands out because it has a complicated spout system that allows the water to always be kept at the edge without spilling.

On twelve lions rests a large dodecagonal cup in white marble that has an octagonal base. A poem by Ibn Zamrack is engraved on its edges. In the seventeenth century another cup was added on top, which is now in the Patio de los Adarves. Water flows from the lions' mouths, and we must not forget that it is the main protagonist in this courtyard.

Patio details

Column details

This patio is similar to others that can be found in the Alhambra, such as the Patio de Comares. It is inspired by the Muslim world, with the traditional scheme of the typical Hispanic-Muslim house. It was a private area and the social life of the family was carried out in it. It is an open-air patio surrounded by the rooms, which are communicated through this area that is inside but faces the outside. Behind the columns with profuse Arabic decoration there are covered galleries that allow you to shelter and enjoy the beautiful patio without going outside, something that resembles the cloisters of Christianity.

What to see in the Alhambra

Alhambra in Granada

The Alhambra is the main attraction in Granada and you should dedicate a day to see it calmly, because it has many interesting spaces. One of them is the Generalife with its gardens, the resting place of Muslim royalty. A beautiful palace that is outside the walls of the Alhambra. The Nasrid Palaces They are considered one of the most beautiful parts of the Alhambra. Inside the rooms you can see ancient crafts and above all you have to look at the incredible Arabic decoration.

There are places that are simply spectacular, such as the incredible Hall of the Abencerrajes. Its ceiling and walls have been sculpted with thousands of details that will leave anyone speechless. You have to take your time to enjoy this amazing vault decorated with the work of artisans.

Tips for traveling to Granada

One of the things that should always be done in advance is buy tickets to visit the Alhambra. It is not the first to arrive and does not find tickets because sometimes they are sold out for days. So they should be bought and in advance to avoid scares. Do not forget that it is one of the most visited places in Andalusia. In addition, it is better to go during spring or autumn, since in winter it can snow and in summer the heat is suffocating.

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