Muslim Christian Jews in Al-Andalus

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Many modern civilizations have been influenced by earlier civilizations in history. These earlier civilizations have created many different ideas that are still used today. These ideas can be seen in governments, make-up of cities, and architecture. Architecture in particular is still very prominent from earlier civilizations such as the case in Al-Andalus. The most important building in Islamic Spain, like other centers of Muslim civilizations is the mosque, house of worship. The inside of a mosque is empty, without seats or altars, as the empty space is a surface used for expression of form. All mosques are built to model the Prophet’s mosque in Madinat al Nabi in present day Saudi Arabia. The Prophet’s mosque was a simple rectangular building with a prayer niche, mihrab to show the direction to face during worship. The columns inside that held up the roof were made up of date palm trunks. Almost every mosque has the same features as the Prophet’s mosque, although some have varied depending on the region of were Muslims lived. The decoration of mosques varies also. Some have earthen or white-plastered walls, while others contain fabulously carved and tiled geometric shapes. No mosque will contain any depiction of animal or human beings that would suggest worship of anything besides Allah. Some mosques will contain scriptures from the Qur'an as decoration on walls, arches, domes and tiles. Al-Andalus has some of the most historic architecture. The Great Mosque of Cordoba was designed under the rule of Abdurrahman I and construction began in 787. The building was innovative for its time. The double horseshoe-shaped arches added height and drama to the prayer space, especially with their red and white striped decoration on top of simple columns. The use of color in architecture was a deign element that traveld widely under Andalusian influence. In 961, poly lobed arches with carved decoration, meaning that the arch was scalloped was added to a special section of...
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