2. Great Mezquita
The Mezquita of Cordoba is one of the most
beautiful, particular and fascinating
mosques in the world and is undoubtedly
the most important building in the
The Grande Mezquita de Cordoba is visited
every year by over a million tourists from
every corner of the world and is therefore
one of the most attractive places in Spain as
a whole, so much so that, in 1984, it was
declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
3. The Mezquita of Córdoba is an Islamic mosque
that was first converted into a Christian cathedral
in the 13th century. It was originally built in 785
CE by Abd ar-Rahman and is still considered an
important monument of Islamic architecture
4. Alterations and restorations
• The most significant alteration to the structure was the
construction of a Renaissance transept and nave in 1523.
Charles V gave permission for the project to proceed, after
opposition from the Cordoba city council.
• The minaret served as a bell tower after being damaged by a
strong earthquake or storm in 1589. A Renaissance-style bell
tower was built around the minaret to reinforce it.
• A number of modern restorations have been done, starting in
1816, starting with the restoration of the original mihrab. The
bell tower started to be restored in 1991 and completed in
2014. The Renaissance choir and the transept of the cathedral
were restored between 2006 and 2009.
Piantina della Mezquita
5. It was originally
supposed to be a
The site of the Mezquita of Cordoba
was originally the site of a Roman
temple. Historians believe it was a
place of worship for the Roman god
However, recently, these claims have
been termed speculation due to a
misunderstanding regarding the
origins of Roman milestones found
nearby. The claims were also rejected
by Robert Knapp, in his presentation
of Roman-era Cordoba.
6. Construction of
the Basilica of
When the Visigoths invaded the area
in the year 572, they took over
Cordoba and built a church there.
When the Moors conquered
Andaluisa in 711 from the Christians,
the church was split into two halves
and was used as a place of worship
by both Christians and Muslims.
In 784, however, the church was
destroyed on the orders of Emir Abd
al-Rahman, and work began on a
7. Destruction of the Church and
construction of the Great Mosque
Emr al-Rahman ordered the destruction of the church and began
work on a large mosque. Construction lasted more than 200 years
and was finally completed in 987. An outer nave and courtyard were
added, making it the second largest mosque in the Islamic kingdom,
after the Kaaba in Arabia. The hypostyle hall was a courtyard with a
fountain at its centre, an orange grove and a minaret which is now
present within a bell tower. The first expansion was carried out by Abd
ar-Rahman II between 833 and 848. Abd ar-Rahman III continued to
expand the north side between 951 and 952.
Al-HakamII expanded the south side in 961, and finally, Al-Mansur
expanded the eastern side between 987 and 988. He extended the
hall about 45 meters to the south and added 12 more arches or bays,
repeating the double level arches of the original design, maintaining
The last expansion work under Muslim rule was under Al-Mansur
who extended the mosque laterally to the east, enlarging both the
8. Conversion into
Cordoba was reconquered by the Christians in 1236.
Immediately, King Ferdinand III ordered the lanterns of the
mosque to be brought back to Santiago de Compostela, which
was reconverted with the original bells.
The mosque was again converted into a church, although the
mosque was never demolished. Other alterations were made
over the years, which resulted in a hybrid structure.
Over time, several chapels were created around the internal
structure of the building, with most of the burial chapels built
through private patronage.