Al Andalus Essay

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The land of Al Andalus The creation of Al Andalus is a result of conflict within the Islamic Empire, between two families, the Abbasids and the Umayyad. The conflict arose when the Abbasids started a civil war with the Umayyad’s on the premise that the Umayyad’s where putting religion after conquest. After the Umayyad’s had been slaughtered the remaining survivor Abd al-Rahman I fled through northern Africa into southern Spain where he established himself as the ruler of the land that had once belonged to the whole Umayyad empire. In the particular the creation of Al Andalus, has at one point or another been referred to as a foundation of a utopian nation. Abd al-Rahman I chose the specific land to build the palace because of the terrain, it is set between a valley and a mountain range, looking out onto the valley so that it would be visible to all and at the same time as a political move. 1 This location helped in not only separating the royalty from the common people but also showed that they were grand and overlooking the city below. The steep inclines made for ideal security measures in case of an attack upon the city the palace would have been the last line of defense. The stone used to make up the palace came from the zone located between the valley and the mountain, majority of the stone work that make up the palace come from somewhere close by. This explains the remarkable speed it took to create the works. Additionally the inside of the palace is historically important as it was advanced in pluming in a time where that knowledge was thought to be lost with the Roman Empire. Within the walls of the palace the people had the hydraulic system installed that provided water constantly to all the buildings inside based upon... ... middle of paper ... ...xt, from Greek and Arabic into Latin and so it reinforces the idea that Al Andalus was really an empire built on thinkers and knowledge lovers. Their love of knowledge spawned libraries and schools. In fact the Al-Hakem II the son and successor of Abd al-Raman I “built one of the greatest libraries in the Islamic world in Cordoba, rivaling those at Baghdad and Cairo.”15 The great love of knowledge that thrived in Al Andalus was vast and attracted scholars throughout Europe. Al-Hakem even made twenty-seven free schools that drew in even more scholars from Muslims to Christians to Jews. At a point the Maghreb historian al-Maqqari states that there are four things that made Al Andalus great and out of the four the knowledge was the greatest. 16 Al Andalus has been credited as being a beginning of what a utopia would be, a place where political, economical and social

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