Spain’s Illustrious Alhambra Opens The Captive Tower For A Limited Time

THE Patronage of the Alhambra will open to the public during this month of February the Captive Tower, a building of the Sultan Yúsuf I

In a statement, the Patronage of the Alhambra has informed that the Captive Tower, considered one of the most exquisite rooms, generally closed to the public for conservation reasons, will be open to the public during this month of February.

The tower has had different names over the course of history, being variously known as the Tower of the Thief, of the Ladies and of the Sultana.

Constructed at the end of the 13th century, although it was renovated and adapted for use as living quarters in the time of Yusuf I in the first half of the 14th century. Due to its architectural structure and decorative composition, it is the landmark that underlines the purest moment of Nasrid art.

This tower combines the defensive structure of its exterior with lavish living quarters on the inside.

One of the most outstanding elements of the Captive Tower is the tiling of the plinths that run along the lower part of the walls.

This space presents beautiful traces, with pieces of various colours among which purple stands out, whose use in architectural ceramics has been considered unique.

Also noteworthy is the tiled epigraphic cartouche that borders the upper part of the plinths, similar to the one at the Mirador de Lindaraja.

Since the mid-19th-century, the tower has been known as de la Cautiva, the Captive Tower, due to the romantic literary legend that tells that Isabel de Solis was imprisoned there in the 15th century. The Sultan Muley Hacen (Boabdil’s father) fell madly in love with Isabel and married her, from which moment she was called Soraya, which means “Dawn Star”.

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Written by

Cristina Hodgson

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