Search our Site

This article has been visited 3,357 times

Museo Vivo de Al-Andaluz in Córdoba Municipality in Córdoba Province

By Nick Nutter | 24 Jan 2018

Introduction

The museum housed in the 14th Century gatehouse and tower situated at the southern end of the Punta Romana, Roman bridge, is probably unique. It demonstrates through the use of video and audio how people of three cultures, Christianity, Muslim and Judaism lived peacefully side by side during the 10th Century’.

It is often forgotten that the Arabs were superb seamen. It was probably the Arabs that invented the settee sail on craft in the Red Sea and the design, very similar to the lateen sail of a modern felucca, was copied by other seafarers in Egypt, Iraq and elsewhere. Whilst the Phoenicians were active in the Mediterranean the Arabs were quietly trading between India, Egypt and the East Coast of Africa using the monsoon winds to go out and back taking a full year for the round trip. These voyages included long stretches in open waters out of sight of land and, more crucially, travel north and south which meant changes in latitude. In the Mediterranean open water journeys are basically east to west. The museum has a copy of a map that shows the early Arab world.

The Arabs already had massive experience of navigating north to south, in the featureless deserts of the Middle East and North Africa. They had developed methods to obtain their latitude, Arabs measured the altitude above the horizon to a known star, and then deduced from this the altitude of the Pole Star, (since the Pole Star was the one star that did not move in the sky). In some cases ancient navigators measured directly the altitude of the Pole Star. This was the simplest method, and was known as the science of qiyas. The easiest method was to use the width of a finger. When held at arm’s length, the width of four fingers was considered to measure 4 isba’. In a 360 degree circle there were 224 isba’. It was considered that a day’s sailing due north would raise the Pole Star 1 isba’ from the horizon.

Since not all Arab mariners could learn the science of qiyas, and to introduce standardization, not everybody had fingers of the same width, navigational instruments had to be devised that could tell a mariner on which latitude he was for every day of the year. Some beautiful examples in bronze are displayed in the museum.

We Welcome Your Comments

We'll never share your email with anyone else.

Please add together 3 + 2 =

 

You may also enjoy reading .....

Córdoba
The Mesquite at Cordoba
On the Rio Guadalquivir
A heron on the Rio Guadalquivir at Cordoba
The Arab Baths
Courtyard
Madinat al-Zahra
Madinat al-Zahra

Book your Holiday



Booking.com

CONTACT Us

Please prove you are human add 8 + 5 =

NEWSLETTER Subscription

Subscribe to our mailing list to receive our Newsletters

Please prove you are human add 8 + 5 =

If you liked this article you may be interested in ....

The Rock from Bottom to Top
by Nick Nutter & Julie Evans
Gibraltar - The Rock from Bottom to Top
Buy NOW on Buy The Rock from Bottom to Top on Amazon
Mr Henderson’s Railway
by Nick Nutter & Julie Evans
Mr Henderson’s Railway - Algeciras to Ronda
Buy NOW on Buy Mr Henderson's Railway on Amazon
The Road to Manilva
by Nick Nutter & Julie Evans
The Road to Manilva
Buy NOW on Buy The Road To Manilva on Amazon
The Sherry Triangle
by Nick Nutter & Julie Evans
The Sherry Triangle
Buy NOW on Buy The Sherry Triangle on Amazon