Giralda Tower - Seville, Spain
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The Giralda tower was originally a Minaret, constructed by the Moors between 1184 and 1197 up to 76 m. in height. After the reconquest in 1568 the Christians fitted the minaret with the bell tower, reaching a total height of almost 100 m.
The Giralda is the most emblematic monument of Seville
Originally the minaret of the former mosque was crowned by three golden spheres that fell and disappeared in the 16th century after an earthquake. Several designs were proposed to substitute them.
The current appearance of a belfry was designed in the 16C by the Cordovan architect Hernn Ruiz, who added the bell chamber and four upper rooms each with their own balconies. A statue symbolising faith stands at the top of the tower and acts as a weathervane, whose nickname Giraldillo also gives its name to the tower.
The giralda belltower
A masterpiece of Almohad art
The subtle, delicate decoration exemplifies perfectly the principles of the Almohad religious movement. It is rigorous, austere and against all forms of luxury. This was the origin of an artistic trend that linked beauty with simplicity.
The Koutoubia tower in Marrakesh, built just before the Giralda tower, served as a model for the latter. Each one of its four sides is divided into three vertical sections decorated in sebka brick. This pattern, when repeated, forms a network of diamond shaped multileaved arcs.
You can climb the 70m bell chamber up a 34 story ramp with a slope that decreases toward the top to facilitate easy climbing.
View from the Giralda
Take your time and enjoy the views of the orange trees in the courtyard, the gargoyles, the pinnacles of the cathedral, the Alcazar palace and the Archive of the Indies. Once there you will be rewarded for your hard efforts as the panoramic view over the town is superb.
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