Wednesday, August 19, 2009

La Mezquita courtyard

The baroque bell tower seen today actually encases the muslim minaret and from the right angle I could just barely make out the red bricks inside.

I entered first through the court of oranges (Patio de los Naranjos) which was full of olive and palm trees before the Christians planted the orange trees. All are lined up on a grid and echo the columns on the inside of the mosque. Originally the mosque was open to the Patio and to the street, bring in more light. It would also allow for the visual connection of the tree & column grid.
The Muslims had an interesting system for watering the trees in the court. Fountains placed in the court could overflow and had a small channel surrounding them from which the water flowed throughout the courtyard to the trees. The fountain was on when I visited but not enough to water the trees. You can see below the small stone-paved channels connecting each tree well.

I always seem to find one metal door in each mosque I visit. Here someone is keeping extra stones for use in maintaining the paved courtyard.

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