What Is the Alhambra?

During the Middle Ages, the Moors from North Africa conquered most of Spain and Portugal, and set up a kingdom there.

They chose as their capital the city of Granada, where they built a magnificent palace and fortress surrounded by red brick walls. The fortress became known as the Alhambra, from the Arabic word for “red.”

The Alhambra is so large that it would take about an hour to walk around its walls. But the Alhambra is much more noted for its beauty than its size. It has been called by many people “the most beautiful structure on earth.”

All through the Alhambra are marble and alabaster sculptures, colorful mosaics, pools, fountains, and tree-shaded courtyards. One of the most beautiful parts of the Alhambra is the Court of Lions, named after an alabaster basin in the middle of the court, supported by lions carved out of white marble!

According to legend, the Alhambra is so beautiful that people who live there refuse to leave for heaven when they die. So, the Alhambra is haunted by the ghosts of its former residents!

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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