Wednesday, 24 October 2012

According to Cordoba tradition, at this time of year serenades are sung at midnight to honour St. Raphael. This year, an image of St. Raphael was being installed in Cordoba cathedral (formerly known as Cordoba mosque), so the event was held in the cathedral grounds.

Somehow, singing serenades at midnight to honour a Catholic saint in the grounds of a former grand mosque strikes me as the perfect expression of a successful Reconquista.

After the singing, a ceremony was held in the cathedral that was built inside the mosque. At the back, you can just see the Islamic arches of the former mosque, with the Christian cathedral in the foreground.

Recently, I've been reading a general history of Spain called "Spain: a Unique History" by Stanley G. Payne. I was pleased, and surprised, to discover that it is refreshingly free of political correctness.

One section, in particular, is relevant to this post.
Unlike the Mongols, the Arabs would soon construct a major new civilisation, which would impose itself permanently on each of the many lands conquered, Islamised and in most cases Arabised, with the sole exception of Spain. Only in the Iberian Peninsula was a large territory both conquered and for the most part both culturally and religiously islamised, only to be reconquered and de-Islamised by a portion of its pre-Muslim inhabitants. This fact alone would have made Spain absolutely unique in world history, if the Spanish had never accomplished anything else.


Maria José said...

La asociación musulmana Watani de Lleida ha pedido por carta al presidente del Gobierno, Mariano Rajoy, al de la Generalitat, Artur Mas, y al alcalde de Lleida, Àngel Ros, que se tipifique como delito insultar al Islam y a los musulmanes.

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