THESE NOTES HOLD a wide range of references, since this book had of necessity to condense readings of secondary and primary sources within a few pages, a few paragraphs, or even a sentence or two. The idea was not to write a new scholarly work, but to bring together in one book, from hither and yon, hundreds of the ideas, facts, and ruminations of the very wide-ranging and superb scholarship of the last several decades. This work has transformed our understanding of Al-Andalus, and much of my text is meant in homage to the work of the many scholars who have brought us this new understanding.
This book relates how one family made sense of where they lived. To make such an effort, as we come to love a place and people, is the natural inclination of many families. At the same time, as a family story, this text necessarily left aside much of the hedging, qualification, nuance, and argument—sometimes ferocious argument—that is sometimes present in the scholarship I consulted. The aim here was to paint a picture in broad strokes, to cover a lot of ground, and to provide a point of entry for those readers who want to explore more thoroughly the details of, say, the arts of medicine or poetry in Al-Andalus, or the Inquisition, or the macroeconomics of Spain in the centuries after Ferdinand and Isabel. For those who want to learn more about the background and context of the history and ideas I have written about, these notes are meant to help. The combination of the notes and bibliography give a more complete sense of the depth, richness, and variety of scholarly work that provides the foundation for the propositions and conjectures in this book, and they will also lead the reader to contrary views. For any reader who wants yet more detail and ease of reference, I will maintain and enrich these notes with links to images, references, and online resources, all in the website that accompanies this book.
ONE AFTERNOON IN GRANADA
2) “A crimson ribbon your lips . . .”: Bloch, The Song of Songs, 4:3. This translation by Ariel and Chana Bloch is
“An enclosed garden . . .”: ibid., 4:12,13.
“Let us go early to the vineyards . . .”: ibid., 7:13.
Solomon’s temple itself: 1 Kings: 18, 20, 42, 49.
the only artifact: This object is in the Israel Museum of Jerusalem.
3) Some scholars: No one really knows what fruit was eaten in the Garden of Eden, but the idea that it was an apple was dreamed up by Cyprianus
Gallus, a theologian working in Gaul in the fifth century. The pomegranate and the fig are the most likely candidates, since both trees grow in Palestine. The pomegranate, in particular, was a valued and powerful symbol, not only serving as iconic decoration of Solomon’s temple, but woven into the hem of the robes of religious leaders. Even the crown of Solomon was said to have the shape of a pomegranate.
This hypnotic Sura: The Holy Quran, Sura LV: 62–72.
4) In the Hadith: See, for example, El-Naggar, Treasures of the Sunnah, 89–91, referring to the collection of Hadith compiled by the fifteenth- century Cairene scholar Imam as-Suyuti. Intelligently selected and useful selections of Hadith may be found in Shah, Idries, Caravan of Dreams, pp. 16–25, and in Shah, Tahir, The Middle East Bedside Book, 54–60, 256–267.
Such signs are called, in Arabic, ayat: Seyyed Hossein, An Introduction to Islamic Cosmological Doctrines, pp. 6 (note 9), 258. It is important to understand that these signs are said to occur in the natural world as well as within us. They are the visible signs in the phenomenal world of a permanent and beautiful reality. For a more complete exposition of an Islamic view of the cosmos, and of ayat, see Nasr, Religion and the Order of Nature, pp. 60–61, 136, 143.
To the buying of a pomegranate: Jalaladin Rumi, the Mathnawi, Book 1, verses 717–719.
5) “His name was John of God”: There is much biographical information on John of See, for example, Butler, Lives of the Saints: March, pp. 69–74. It should be noted that John of God is not only the founder of the Hospitaller Order, but he is also, bless him, the patron saint of booksellers. In Granada, a relatively unvisited but surpassingly lovely place is the hospital of John of God. It’s one of those places that uses beauty, as well as medical arts, to heal. For photos and a description of the hospital, see Larios, El hospital y la basilica de San Juan de Dios.
THE CARMEN OF OUR SERENDIPITY
15) A house and garden respectful of the traditions of Andalusia: For those readers who would like to look into these traditions, see Pinar Savos, Antiguos carmenes de Granada, pp. 81–87. See also the fine and instructive paintings in El Albayzín, inspiration de pintores, pp. 82–90 and passim. The book offers a colorful sense of the neighborhood, which is as much like a painting as any I know. Another book of paintings is Segura Bueno, Granada al natural. See pp. 71–82 for images of the Albayzín, its plazas, gardens, and the interior of some carmenes.
THE TIME TRAVELS OF A GARDEN
27) The first recognizable such garden: Dicky, The Hispano-Arab Garden, The Legacy of Islamic Spain, p. 1016. For a look at Cyrus the Great’s sixth- century bc garden at Pasargadae, see Hobhouse, Gardens of Persia, p. 14. For a diagram of quadripartite gardens in Samarra from the ninth century bc, see Hobhouse, ibid., p. 74.
Islamic Paradise Garden: For examples from Granada, see Lehrman, Earthly Paradise, pp. 87–107. For a discussion of the paradise garden, see Dickie, “The Hispano-Arab Garden: Notes Toward a Typology,” p. 1016. For further examples that highlight the tradition from Persia, see Hantelmann, Gardens of Delight, pp. 38–39 for gardens in Spain; and for enticing residential gardens in Morocco, see pp. 137, 148, 157.
the adventurer Xenophon: For a summary of the usage of paradeisos, see the references in Liddell and Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon. Xenophon used the word in his Anabasis, Cyropedia, and Hellenica.
the blessed association of paradise and gardens: widely known, of course. For a fine summary and discussion, see Moynihan, Paradise as a Garden, pp. 1–12.
Eden itself is not a garden at all: Genesis, 2:8
30) gardens hold beauties: For an insightful commentary on the meaning and metaphysics of Islamic gardens, see Harrison, Gardens, pp. 196–197.
And it is useful to think of the way these gardens are associated with the development of insight, the search for truth, and the work of transcendence. There are a number of spiritual texts conceived directly in relation with these beautiful enclosed spaces. Take, for instance, The Walled Garden of Truth by the twelfth-century teacher Hakim Sanai. Or the Garden of Mystery, a fourteenth-century Persian poem by the mystic Mahmud Shabistari. Both of these texts offer insights into the beauties and practice of Sufism, a powerful influence throughout the Mediterranean and especially in Al-Andalus.
33) There are ornate fountains: See, for example, Jashemski, The Gardens of Pompeii: Herculaneum and the Villas Destroyed by Vesuvius, pp. 58, 60–61, 70, 77, 102, 108–109, 112, 304–305, 307, and 309, and on p. 329, a reconstruction of a Roman garden in the Getty Museum in Los Angeles. Another good source for images of the gardens in Pompeii is Farrar, Ancient Roman Gardens, the color plates that begin after p. 142.
34) Battening down to make their historical mark: For those who long to know more about the Visigoths in Spain, and their kings in purple slippers and ermine robes, see, for example, O’Callaghan, A History of Medieval Spain, 44–51. Also Makki, “The Political History of Al-Andalus,” 5–6, and Snow, The Root and the Flower, pp. 36–42.
In the year 711: This resonant and legendary event is discussed in a wide variety of texts. See, for example, Snow, ibid., p. 42. For a more complete and a beautifully written account, see Lewis, God’s Crucible, pp. 118–132.
35) “O citizens of Al-Andalus . . .”: quoted in Reina, Abu Madyan, El amigo de Dios, p.
36) the first Islamic dynasty: Hodgson, The Venture of Islam, 217–219. Also Lapidus, A History of Islamic Societies, pp. 56–67.
37) For in Rusafa: Ruggles, Gardens, Landscapes, and Vision, 42–45.
38) the fig, the apple, the pear: See, for example, Trillo San Jose, Agua, tierra y hombres en Al-Andalus, pp. 43–48. Also Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, 70–75.
Historians have even looked at the pollens: Amor, “Aplicación de modernas técnicas de la ciencia paleobotanica a la restauración de los antiguos jardines, mediante la recogida de muestras de tierra,” pp. 215–219, and Ruidor Carol, “Plantes employeés dans les jardins historique de l’Islam,” pp. 221–233.
39) These estates, called Munyas: Ruggles, ibid., 45–48. See also Dickie, “The Hispano-Arab Garden: Notes Toward a Typology,” pp. 1027–1029.
like the muwashaha, or the zajal: For a very useful essay for those who want to understand this inventive poetry, see Monroe, “Zajal and Muwashshaha: Hispano-Arabic Poetry and the Romance Tradition,” pp. 403–413. For a comprehensive and brilliant survey of what is known about the muwashaha, and a history of the scholarship, see Rosen, “The Muwashshah,” passim.
40) “Juice is extracted . . .” Schultz-Dornburg, Sonnenstand. “The Calendar of Córdoba,” trans. John Brogdan,
41) The Madinat al-Zahra: See, for example, Dodds, “The Arts of Al-Andalus,” 603–605. And Ruggles, ibid., 87–109. Also Triana, “Madinat az-Zahra,” pp. 233–244. Better yet, go to see the ruins just outside of Córdoba. The Junta de Andalucia publishes a fine guide, replete with drawings, maps, renderings, facts, and careful speculations. See Vallejo Triano, Madinat al-Zahra: guia oficial del conjunto arqueológico, passim.
43) the gentleman and scholar Ismail Ibn Naghrela: Ruggles, , pp. 63–64. Note that Naghrela is known also by his Hebrew name of Shmuel HaNagid.
44) Ibn al-Khatib: quoted in Dickie, “The Hispano-Arab Garden: Notes Toward a Typology,” p. 1026
Andrea Navagiero: quoted in Dickie, “Granada: A Case Study of Arab Urbanism in Muslim Spain,” p. 104. We should note that we as a civilization owe this man a great debt, for it is he who brought the sonnet from Italy to Spain. This life-giving information passed from Navagiero to the poet Juan Bascon, in 1526, as the two of them walked along the banks of the Darro. See Barnstone, The Spanish Sonnet, pp. 3–4
45) “Outside the city . . .”: quoted in Dickie, ibid., p. 105.
WHERE WALKING IS LIKE FLYING
55) What would we find?: See the color plates for a come-hither offering. If one is interested to trace the evolution of the Albayzín, there is an enlightening source: Castilla Brazales, En busca de la Granada andalusí. The book has original and beautiful drawings of the Albayzín, and of noteworthy buildings in the Albayzín. See especially the drawings of La puerta de los Tableros, pp. 100–101; El Maristan, pp. 108–109; La Mezquita Mayor del Albayzín, pp. 196–197; and the Baño del Albayzín, pp. 278–279. Another source with reproductions of plans of the barrio as it evolved since 1494 is Calatrava, Los planos de Granada; pp. 34–58 have the earliest renderings, then the book carries on to 1919. Also, Castello Nicás, La renovación urbana en el Albaicín, has a good early history, supplemented with photos, pp. 23–64.
57) Let’s start with the geography: For a complete exposition with excellent maps, Bosque Maurel, Joaquín y Amparo Ferrer Rodríquez, “Geografía de antiguo reino de Granada,” Historia del Reino de Granada, pp. 17–36.
58) They are called los Iberos: Carrascosa Salas, El Albayzín en la historia, 27–33. Also Pozo Felguera, Albayzín solar de reyes, pp. 17–19.
an excavation: on the corner of Cuesta Maria de la Miel and Camino Nuevo de San Nicolas.
60) At least they had dishes: Have a look at them in Cano Piedra, La ceramica en Granada, 34–36.
mampostería: If you want to see one, Carrascosa Salas, ibid., has a Zirid example, p. 50.
61) The Ibero-Roman city: Carrascosa Salas, ibid., 34–68. Pozo Felguera, ibid., pp. 18–22. For a much longer treatment of the whole province of Granada, see Gonzalez Román, Cristóbal, “La Antiguedad,” pp. 69–103.
62) to historical notice: Carracosa Salas, ibid., pp. 67-69.
63) Council of Elvira: There has been a scholarly argument about whether this council, or synod, was held in Elvira or in the settlement that would centuries later be called the Albayzín. I opt for the Albayzín, rather than the much more exposed Elvira, which was prosperous but vulnerable. For a historical exposition supporting this view, see Dale, The Synod of Elvira and Christian Life in the Fourth Century, pp. 10–11. On the background of the council, see Hess, The Early Development of Canon Law and the Council of Serdica, pp. 40–42. The translations here at taken from Council of Elvira, ca. 306, Catholic University of America. n.d., Web, April 2004.
72) In 743 a group of Syrians: Pozo Felguera, ibid., p. 23.
So began the reign of the Ziris: Carrascosa Salas, ibid., pp. 85–91.
Almorabitin: Carrascosa Salas, ibid., p. 89. Also Castilla Brazales, En busca de la Granada andalusí, pp. 47–49. And Pozo Felguera, ibid., p. 174.
Aljibes: On these wonderful sites, by far the most detailed description and background is Castilla Brazales, ibid., pp. 46, 54, 69, 76, 80, 82, 123–125, 132, 155–157, 163–166.
73) “The water is most healthful . . .”: quoted in Carrascosa Salas, ibid., 89–90. For a more complete account of the remarkable and durable project that brought water from Aynadamar to the Albayzín, see the introduction by Carmen Trillo San Jose to Garrido Atienza, Las aguas del Albaicin y Alcazaba, pp. XXXIV–LXXI. With illustrations and the original 1902 text of Garrido Atienza.
the name of Badis: Pozo Felguera, ibid., pp. 26–27. And Carrascosa Salas, ibid., pp. 91–92. On the beautiful names of the neighborhoods and plazas, see Carrascosa Salas, ibid. p. 91. Also Dickie, “Granada: A Case Study of Arab Urbanism in Muslim Spain,” pp. 90–91.
74) There were farmers, laborers, muleteers; millers: Carrascosa Salas, ibid., 121–123. A more extensive summary is in Pozo Felguera, ibid. pp. 43–48. For a sketch of the commercial organization of the Albayzín and Granada, see Dickie, ibid., 96–98.
75) Where did they live?: One of the best ways to answer this question is to visit a well-preserved house in the Albayzín at 16 Calle de Horno de In the Carmen de Aben Humaya, near Calle San Nicolas, they may let you see the interior, a beautifully preserved and restored ancient house with a painted wood ceiling. For a detailed description of this carmen, see Castilla Brazales, ibid., pp. 126–131. Other examples in the Albayzín are the building at the Escuela de Estudios Arabes at the Casa de Chapiz, and restorations at 2 Calle de Yaguas; 1 Plaza de Aliatar; and 14 Plaza San Miguel Bajo. For a description of both the houses and carmenes in their classic form, see Pozo Felguera, ibid., pp. 101–104.
76) What did they eat?: I give here only the briefest account of this delicious culinary art. For a range of mouth-watering examples, see the recipes in Fernández Bustos, Herencia de la cocina andalusí, 101–141. In the same volume, for descriptions of the cuisine as it evolved through Al-Andalus, see pp. 25–65. If you are in the kitchen and longing to cook, there are more recipes for food and fresh beverages in Elexpury, Al-Andalus, magia y seducción culinarias, pp. 61–76. More further enticing accounts also Pozo Felguera, ibid., 125–130. And Carrascosa Salas, ibid., pp. 125–128.
They dressed in loose clothes: For some images, see Pozo Felguera, ibid., 39. Also for a description and two images, see Carrascosa Salas, ibid., pp. 121–123.
77) There were setbacks: For a summary of both the achievements and the fanaticism of the Alhomads, see Menocal, Dodds and Barbale, The Arts of Intimacy, 128–129. For specific information on Granada, Pozo Felguera, ibid., pp. 31–32.
78) Almohad minaret: Castilla Brazales, ibid., 120–121. For a photograph and description, see Carrascosa Salas, El Albayzín y su patrimonio, p. 44.
the first of the Nasrid kings: For the political history, see Makki, “The Political History of Al-Andalus,” pp. 77–84. To get a more pictorial sense of their influence and accomplishments, see Menocal, The Arts of Intimacy, pp. 247–260. For a shorter treatment, Carrascola Salas’s El Albayzín en la historia, p. 94.
79) “At the foot of the mountains . . .”: Munzer, p.
“All the slope . . .”: quoted in Dickie, ibid., p.105.
80) “the houses were delightful . . .”: quoted in Dickie, ibid., 101.
Flowering trees found their way into the names of things: For a range of these evocative names, see Dickie, ibid., p. 90. Also Carrascosa Salas, ibid., pp. 91–93.
81) Late in the fifteenth century: For a fine summary of the complex run-up and bitter power politics of the marriage of Ferdinand and Isabella, see Liss, Isabel the Queen, 57–116.
Boabdil: See, for example, his partnership with Ferdinand in that king’s siege of Málaga, in Harvey, Islamic Spain 1250 to 1500, pp. 300–301.
82) Granada was starved into submission: This is a story that has been told innumerable See, for example, the authoritative Harvey, ibid., pp. 307–314.
The Articles of Capitulation: This text and summary of this pivotal document is from Harvey, ibid., pp. 315–321.
84) an Edict of Expulsion: For the text, Edict of Expulsion, Web, http://www. sephardicstudies.org/decree.html.
Effectively transferred the preponderance of Jewish wealth to Christian hands: I write this as someone with long business experience, buying and selling in a variety of markets. It is remarkable and painful to read of these forced and violent transfers of wealth earned by long labor. Anyone who has ever been in business will know what you get in a forced and urgent liquidation of assets. And such destruction of Jewish families led often enough to their enslavement or death. See Liss, ibid., pp. 310–312. Also Snow, Spain, the Root and the Flower, pp.147–149. Also Reston, The Dogs of God, pp. 262–266. Almost all commentators point out that the Crown got an important share, which they used for rewards to their allies, for debt payments, or simply for royal enrichment.
85) Hernando Talavera: Liss, ibid., pp. 259–263. Harvey, ibid., p. 329. Castro, The Spaniards, p. 250.
Cardenal Ximenes de Cisneros: Liss, ibid., pp. 358–361 and pp. 368–370. Barrios Alguilera, Granada Morisca, la convivencia negada, pp. 72–74.
On the consequential and prophetic negotiation with Portugal, see Harvey, Muslims in Spain, pp. 16–21. In the same volume, for details on the provocative and aggressive actions of Cisneros, see pp. 28–33.
88) It amounted to more than five thousand volumes: Bosmajian, Burning Books, 64. To get an accurate account of the grotesque details, see Baez, Historia universal de la destrucción de libros, pp. 126–129.
Ferdinand and Isabella issued another edict: For the background and explanation of this contemptuous declaration, Harvey, ibid., pp. 56–58.
89) a further series of proclamations: Carrascosa Salas, ibid., pp. 105–112.
90) This attempt to eradicate a whole culture: To get a sense of the issues, the back and forth, the bribes and intimidation and sorrow of these times, see Nuñez Muley, A Memorandum for the President of the Royal Audiencia and Chancery Court of the City and Kingdom of Granada,
91) By the end of 1568: For an account of the period leading to the war, see Harvey, Muslims in Spain 1500–1614, pp. 209–217.
92) There were repellent massacres: For an account of the slaughter of four hundred Muslim women and children who were prisoners of Ferdinand and Isabel’s army, see Marmol, Historia de la rebelion y castigo de los mariscos del reino de Granada, 220. Where Muslim villagers found Spanish troops looting their houses, they burned the houses down with the soldiers inside, Harvey, ibid., p. 228.
they tore it to pieces: Carrascola Salas, ibid., pp.129–130. For a description of the various studies of what was left, Barrios Aguilera, “Albaicín morisco,” pp. 35–41.
Contemporary accounts record the scene: For a precisely observed and mortifying account of this expulsion, see Marmol, ibid., pp. 183–184.
93) In 1571: Carrascola Salas, ibid., p.
94) But then in 1595: For a summary of this fantastical episode, see Harvey, ibid., pp. 265–290. For a translation of some lead tablets in the same volume, see pp. 382–400. For a superb and detailed treatment in a religious and historical context, see Harris, From Muslim to Christian Granada, pp.108–152.
96) By 1620: Pozo Felguera, ibid., p.
“A radical depopulation”: Barrios Aguilera, ibid., p.33.
97) “the rents from the property”: Barrios Aguilera, ibid., p.
In the Albayzín: Carrascola Salas, ibid., pp. 158–162. Also Pozo Felguera, ibid., pp. 72–73.
98) “Many are the curious old . . .”: Tenison, Castile and Andalucia, 98
“almost all of this opulent barrio . . .”: quoted in Carrascola Salas, ibid., 167. To get an idea of how much of the barrio was turning back to fields and gardens, there is a postcard from 1900 that is reproduced in Barrios Rozúa, El Albaicín: paraíso cerrado, conflicto urbano, p. 103.
The Maristan: An extended description and background of this extraordinary institution—a hospital and refuge for those with mental disorders—is in Castilla Brazales, En busca de la Granada andalusí, pp. 103–109. There is a lovely sketch of the building.
99) The first carmenes in the Albayzín: Tito Rojo, “Los cármenes del Albaicín, entre la tradición y el invento,” 58–65. For a pictorial summary of their evolution, see pp. 69–70. See also an account of the history Pozo Felguera, ibid., pp. 103–108.
100) “The streets are narrow . . .” García Lorca, Granada, paraíso cerrado y otras páginas granadinas, pp. 231–234.
102) García Lorca spent time: Gibson, En Granada, su Granada, pp. 114–116.
The poverty, crime, hunger, and hopelessness: An indispensable summary of the background and details of this time, and the relations between clergy and barrio, is in Barrios Rozúa, “Iconoclastia y resacralización del espacio urbano en el Albaicín,” pp. 71–86. For an account of the churches burned or sacked, with photos, see Pozo Felguera, ibid., pp. 79–89.
103) Through 1936: Barrios Rozúa, ibid., pp. 87–88.
104) Nobody likes to see history run the same tape over and over: Barrios Rozua, , pp. 88–92.
105) “We must redeem the Albayzín from Godless Marxism . . .”: quoted in Barrios Rozúa, ibid., p.
“The glory of Spain coincides . . .”: This paragraph is taken from speech of Generalissimo Franco given in 1942. The text, and other excerpts from his speeches, are widely available. See, for example, Intercentres, La nueva España de General Franco. “Imperio y religión,” Web.
AL-ANDALu S: NOTES ON A HIDDEN, Lu STROu S, INDISPENSABLE ERA
111) A medieval chronicle: These writings sometimes have named authors and are sometimes anonymous. They are intensely political and are full of wondrous and portentous language, with a full dosage of the messianic and the biblical. Some of the principal writers were Hernando de Pulgar, Gutierre de Palma, Diego de Valera, Anton de Montoro, and Iñigo deMendoza. For a discussion of the way certain chronicles were meant to serve directly and deliberately as propaganda for Isabel in particular, early in her reign, and the close relation of the chronicles to other texts, see Guardiola-Griffiths, Legitimizing the Queen: Propaganda and Ideology in the Reign of Isabel I of Castile, pp. 45–46, 71–73, 95.
112) James the Moorslayer: For a summary with images of this crusading, emblematic figure, see Menocal, Dodds, and Balbale, The Arts of Intimacy, pp. 100–101.
the narrative core: For a much more comprehensive account of the fevered and phantasmagorical story I have condensed here, see Liss, Isabel the Queen, pp. 168–176, with accompanying notes, which give us the type and tenor of the many chronicles and other texts that contributed to the story as a whole.
114) Even through the twentieth century: The great polemic, of course, was between Americo Castro, who introduced the notion of convivencia to describe the decisive interactions of Christians, Jews, and Muslims in medieval Spain, and his adversary Claudio Sancho-Alboroz, who broadly rejected such ideas. Sancho-Alboroz even proposed that the backwardness of Spain was somehow due to Semitic influence, an idea that would be startling if it were not so transparently a part of the toxic idea of “blood purity.” Though Castro’s ideas have been criticized, refined, and corrected, his contribution was determinative and brilliant. For a useful, technical discussion of some of this controversy, see Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, pp. 340–348.
115) Jose Maria Aznar: This piece of braggadocio is available on the Web on See Aznar, Speech at Georgetown, September 21, 2004.
116) What books do they translate?: They translate the very widest range. For many of the books and a fascinated portrait of the process, see Burnett, “The Translating Activity in Medieval Spain,” 1042–1048. Also Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, The Arts of Intimacy, pp. 232–235. And the indispensable Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, pp. 327–336. It is wonderful to read about this laborious and consequential work, the very portrait and model of the convivencia at its best.
118) a crucial part of the foundation of the Renaissance: The reliance of late medieval and Renaissance Europe on scientific and mathematical texts translated in Spain is now firmly established. See, for example, al-Khalili, The House of Wisdom, pp. 190–203, 229–231.
120) “People of a Book.”: For the basics of this principle, see Armstrong,
A History of God, pp. 159–160.
121) An architectural convivencia: Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, 12–13. For a description and drawings of the form, see Burkhardt,
Moorish Culture in Spain, pp. 13–14.
123) The medieval synagogue of Samuel Halevi: Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, , pp. 241–246, with illustrations.
124) Cristo de la Luz: Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, ibid., pp. 113–117.
125. Abd al-Rahman III: As the best known of the rulers of Al-Andalus, information on his rule is widely available. For a whole range of readings, see the following: Makki, “The Political History of Al-Andalus.” 35–38; Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, The Arts of Intimacy, pp. 22–25; Cabrera, “La pacificación de Al-Andalus,” pp. 27–32; Lewis, God’s Crucible, 319–327.
Hasdai Shaprut: another legendary figure, very well-known. For a richer suite of information, see the following: Pinilla, “Figuras relevantes de la Corte,” pp. 66–67; Bueno, Los Júdios de Sefarad, pp. 39–49; Scheindlin, “The Jews in Muslim Spain,” p. 190; Lewis, God’s Crucible, pp. 330–332.
126) Ismail ibn Neghrela: Scheindlin, “The Jews in Muslim Spain,” 190–194. Shmuel HaNagid, Selected Poems of Shmuel HaNagid, Peter Cole, trans. pp. xiii–xx.
127) Earth to man: Selected Poems of Shmuel HaNagid, ibid., 121.
Luxuries ease: Selected Poems of Shmuel HaNagid, ibid., p. 131.
I’d give everything: Selected Poems of Shmuel HaNagid, ibid., p. 15.
128) Solomon Ibn Gabirol: For a illuminated and illuminating look at the work and life of this man, see Solomon Ibn Gabirol, Peter Cole, , pp. 3–39. The discovery that the great Christian/Muslim philosopher Avicebron was the Jewish Gabirol is told on pp. 13–14. Peter Cole has brought the Jewish poetry of Al-Andalus to the world. For a fine essay on Gabirol that sets his work in the context of Jewish theology and literature, see Tanenbaum, The Contemplative Soul, pp. 57–83.
130) florilegio: The poems that follow here are a small sampling from the treasure house of the poetry of Al-Andalus. May the reader find her way into that house and stay a long while. See Recommended Reading for some
“Is it the darks of your eyes . . .”: Jayyusi, “Andalusi Poetry: The Golden Period,” p. 333.
“She’s played adulteress . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p. 338.
“But what is strange . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p. 340.
131) “Do you belong . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p.
“Blest be the one who . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p. 342.
“Your love is firm . . .”: Jayyusi, “Nature Poetry in Al-Andalus and the Rise of Ibn Khafaja,” p. 383.
“He almost drank my soul . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p. 385.
“Its covering is composed . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p. 376.
132) “The silence of gardens . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p.
“It blocked every which way . . .”: Jayyusi, ibid., p. 391.
133) a deep study of Arabic prosody: Scheindlin, “The Jews in Muslim Spain,”
- 193. In more detail, Scheindlin, “Hebrew Poetry in Medieval Iberia,” pp. 39–45. For a more complete idea of the literary context, Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, The Arts of Intimacy, pp. 144–153.
“By God and God’s faithful—”: this poetry and many of the verses that follow are taken from the work of Peter Cole, who has selected, edited, and translated work from the whole range of poetry in Hebrew written in
Al-Andalus. There are no words to convey the importance of what Professor Cole has accomplished: He has given to the world, in English, for the first time, some of the most powerful, insightful, and beautiful poetry of the whole Middle Ages. This first quote is from his Selected Poems of Shmuel HaNagid, ibid., p. 6.
134) “You who seek my peace . . .”: Selected Poems of Solomon Ibn Gabirol, Peter Cole, trans., p.
“We woke . . .”: Cole, The Dream of the Poem, p. 122.
“Why is that dove . . .”: Cole, ibid., p. 127.
135) “The heavenly spheres . . .”: Cole, ibid., p.
“Man in his love . . .”: Cole, ibid., p. 197.
“As long as a man seeks . . .”: Cole, ibid., p. 223.
136) “The day you left . . .”: Cole, ibid., p.
137) Ibn Tufayl: For a fine and searching account of his work, see Burgel, “Ibn Tufayl and his Hayy Ibn Yaqzan: A Turning Point in Arabic Philosophical Writing,” pp. 830–839.
138) “It became clear to him . . .”: Tufail, The Journey of the Soul, p.
139) “he realized that . . .”: Tufail, ibid., 28.
140) “he would select . . .”: Tufail, ibid., 42.
“he imitated . . .”: Tufail, ibid., p. 43.
141) “When he spun rapidly . . .”: Tufail, ibid., 43.
“Immersed in this state . . .”: Tufail, ibid., p. 45.
142) He will be called Averroes in the West: For background and context on Averroes, see Urvoy, “Ibn Rushd,” For his views on the intellect and psychological material, see al-‘Alawi, “The Philosophy of Ibn Rushd,” pp. 804–825. For an overall sense of how his thought relates to evolving philosophy in the West, see Colish, Medieval Foundations of the Western Intellectual Tradition 400–1400, pp. 144–148.
146) Science and mathematics: I am of course condensing and selecting from a whole spectrum of materials. To get a more expansive sense of the scientific work of the period, a scholarly and exceptionally useful survey is in Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, pp. 293–336. For many details on mathematics, astronomy, geometry, and instrumentation, see Samso, “The Exact Sciences in al-Andalus,” pp. 952–964. For advances in mechanics, botany, agriculture, pharmacology, see Vernet, “Natural and Technical Sciences in al-Andalus,” pp. 938–945. For a fascinating review of maritime, geographical, and navigational expertise, see Hamdani, “An Islamic Background to the Voyages of Discovery,” pp. 273–280. For an account in the context of Europe in the Middle Ages, see Lewis, ibid., pp. 367–370. For a look at the science of Al-Andalus in its position as the undisputed leader of European science, see Vernet, “The Legacy of Islam in Spain,” pp. 108–182.
For a complete account in Spanish, see Vernet, Lo que Europa debe al Islam de España, pp. 197–379. To have a look at some astrolabes and globes, see Dodds, Al-Andalus: The Art of Islamic Spain, pp. 376–383.
150) Dioscorides: Vernet, “Natural and Technical Sciences in al-Andalus,”
- 938. Also Glick, ibid., p. 306.
151) In agriculture: on the organization of irrigated agriculture in Al-Andalus, Trillo San José, Agua, tierra y hombres en Al-Andalus, 42–69. For clear explanation with helpful drawings of the noria and qanat and other technologies, see Trillo San Jose, Agua y paisaje en Granada, pp. 50–64. For an account of agronomy and a sense of the richness of agricultural writing, as well as plant lists and the work of al-Tighnari, see Garcia Sanchez, “Agriculture in Muslim Spain,” passim. For a summary look, see Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, pp. 79–81. And in the same volume, for municipal agricultural technique and crops in specific regions in Al-Andalus, pp. 68–79.
153) “The month when . . .”: Schultz-Dornberg, Sonnenstand. Medieval Hermitages Along the Route to Santiago de Compostela, “The Calendar of Cordoba,” intro.
- “We must not hesitate . . .”: quoted in al-Khalili, The House of Wisdom, 132.
- Abulcasis: For one portrait of Abulcasis, see Morgan, Lost History, 198–205. Further comments are in Vernet, Lo que debe al Islam de España, pp. 247–249.
- by the vigor of its survival: For material on Ziryab, see Wright, “Music in Islamic Spain.” The Legacy of Islamic Spain, pp. 556–560. Also Glick,
ibid., 228–229. For more context and the relation of music to literary arts, see Menocal, The Arabic Role in Medieval Literary History, pp. 28–33 and pp. 99–103. More very helpful commentary with many additional historical details is in Reynolds, “Music,” pp. 64–67. To have a look at the instruments themselves, see the illustrations in Musica y poesia al sur de Al-Andalus, pp. 73–93. In the same volume, a general summary is on pp. 35–39, followed by a description of the instruments. The text is in Spanish, French, and English. For examples of the music itself as it has been recovered and interpreted, a number of CDs are available. See Paniagua, La música de pneuma: las tres culturas de la música medieval española, as well as Paniagua’s other collections.
“The Arabo-Andalusian musical legacy . . .”: Reynolds, “Music.” p. 60.
162) qiyan: Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, ibid., pp.105–106. Also Menocal, The Arabic Role in Medieval Literary History, 27–28. Also Reynolds, ibid., pp. 63–64.
164) the troubadours: To read about this extraordinary poetry, as it relates to Al-Andalus, the most illuminating text I know of is Menocal, The Arabic Role in Medieval Literary History, pp. 27–33, 71–90, 103–111, 118–120. For a sampling of verse written by women in this same tradition, see Bogin, The Women Troubadours, pp. 80–159.
the Cantigas de Santa Maria: There is online a complete text and translation of all of the Cantigas, including the original text of the poems, an English translation, notes on the manuscripts, classification of miracles, a bibliography, and search capacity. Surpassingly useful. See the Oxford Cantigas de Santa Maria database. For a discussion of Alphonso’s personal role, see Snow, “Alfonso as Troubadour: The Fact and the Fiction,” passim.
168) the musicians who performed these songs: For background on the Cantigas as sponsored by Alfonso the Wise, the famous Christian king of Al-Andalus, as well as images from original mss., see Menocal, Dodds, and Barbale, The Arts of Intimacy, pp. 222–228.
170) the Spanish Kama Sutra: The book is Lopez-Baralt, Un Kama Sutra español. The original work of the anonymous author is 347–388. The book sets this extraordinary essay in the context of Western theology and literature and specifically in the context of Spanish literature and erotic writing, such as it was. A scholarly, admirable, enlightening read.
171) Beginning with Saint Paul: For a clear, comprehensive summary of early Christian writing and attitudes toward sexuality, see Lopez-Baralt, , pp. 101–133.
177) Ibn Hazm: The Arberry translation is the standard, Ibn Hazm, The Ring of the For a description of his notion of the transcendent dimension of love, and the iridescent joys of sexual union, see Ormsby, “Ibn Hazm,” pp. 245–246. For an intelligent look at the possible links between Ibn Hazm’s ideas and the tradition of courtly love, see Giffen, “Ibn Hazm and the Tawq al-Hamama,” pp. 435–437.
178) the Zohar: A standard modern text is Matt, The Zohar. For explanation and commentary, see the shorter, earlier version of a small selection of the text, see Matt, Zohar: The Book of Enlightenment. For writing on Kabbalah as part of the essence of Judaism, see Lancaster, The Essence of Kabbalah, 27–32.
179) the Sufis: The seminal work on these men and women is Shah, The Sufis. Material about them hardly fits in an endnote, but much more material and a host of references will be found in the chapter here entitled “A Lucid Work of Love and Helpfulness.” The influence of the Sufis in the development of Al–Andalus is demonstrable and crucial, yet it is just beginning to be understood.
Granada itself owes its origins to the Sufis: Harvey, Islamic Spain 1250 to 1500, pp. 29–37.
180) two directly related Sufi texts: For an account of the superb scholarship that brought these sources to light, see Lopez-Baralt, “The Legacy of Islam in Spanish Literature,” 530–532. al-Nuri’s book is from the ninth century.
Saint John of the Cross: Lopez-Baralt, ibid., p. 530, recounts how the legendary scholar Miguel Asin Palacios traced key symbols in the mystical poetry of Saint John of the Cross to Sufi writings, especially those of Ibn Abbad of Ronda. As to the poetry of Saint John of the Cross, a beautiful translation, with commentary and biographical information, is in Barnstone, The Poetics of Ecstasy, pp. 153–190.
181) a source for Dante: The book is Asin Palacios, La escatología musulmana en la Divina Comedia. In 1982, a fourth edition was issued in On this subject, it is worth looking into illustrated texts of about the miraj. A fine one is The Miraculous Journey of Mahomet, reproduced from a manuscript in the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. Looking at the book, anyone would think of Dante.
Dante scholarship has come round to the idea: See the enlightening summary in Martínez Gásquez, “Translations of the Qur’an and other Islamic Texts before Dante (Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries),” pp. 79–92.
Color: This subject is treated in depth by Bolens, “The Use of Plants for Dyeing and Clothing,” pp. 1008–1012. For the details on Byssus, p. 1008. For a comprehensive look at the use of color in the art and culture of Islam, have a look at Bloom and Blair, And Diverse Are Their Hues, passim. A magnificent book.
183) A spectrum of facts: These selected accounts are gathered from a wide variety of sources among the recent writings on Al-Andalus. They are a small sampling of the many examples of interfaith community in Al-Andalus. For my own selection of books helpful for understanding this era, see the Recommended Reading list. As to some of the volumes that relate the examples I cite, see, for example, the rich detail in Lowney, A Vanished World, pp. 106, 202–208, 221–223. For an account of the convivencia in the context of Jewish history, see Gambel, “Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Medieval Iberia: Convivencia through the Eyes of Sephardic Jews,” pp. 15–22. For an account of conversions and interfaith marriages, see Fletcher, Moorish Spain, pp. 36–40; and in the same book, notes about interfaith wine-bibbing and an important rabbinical advisor to al-Mutamid, pp. 94 and 108. More information on interfaith marriages is in Snow, Spain, the Root and the Flower, pp. 111–112. For interfaith relations in the caliphate, and among the community of slaves, Guichard, “The Social History of Muslim Spain,” pp. 690–693. On dynastic interfaith marriages and their arrangement by means of ambassadors who were poets, see Boase, “Arab Influences on European Love-Poetry,” pp. 465–466. For an account of the religious, judicial, and commercial evolution in Al-Andalus, with all its contradictions and difficulties, see Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, pp. 187–202. For some overall historical context, see Lewis, God’s Crucible, pp. 202–207.
185) the Blessed Ramon Llull: To get a sense of the variety of his works and read a fine, sensitive, scholarly introduction to them, see The Selected Works of Ramon Llull, translated by Anthony Bonner. See also the fine exposition of Llull’s oeuvre in Stone, “Ramon Llull,” pp. 345–356.
187) “While the wise man . . .”: The Selected Works of Ramon Llull, , p. 303.
188) The convivencia was a dangerous experiment: The reader should be aware that there is still a debate about the nature, value, and details of the convivencia; that is, how the experiment of the three faiths living together actually played out on the ground. Though more is learned each year, the argument about the details and the significance can take on real venom, with all the complications of ideological or political motives a part of the For this writer, these debates are a tiresome and troublesome waste of life, a kind of conceptual tar pit. I do not think that the historians of the period I quote in this book have an ideological or political agenda. I certainly do not. That being said, the notion that Jews and Arabs, together with Christians, did something magnificent in Iberia, to the benefit of Europe and the world, is to some scholars and readers somehow inconsequential, or even offensive. I certainly do not wish to give offense, though I may do so, despite my efforts to focus on the facts, as I have selected and gathered them. I am, simple-mindedly enough, just trying to tell the story of one family living in Andalusia. I am saying what it meant to us. And to set forth that meaning, it is important to ask, among many other questions: What was accomplished in Al-Andalus? And why did it matter?
191) the origins of the Inquisition: The literature of the Inquisition now fills whole archives, since this legendary institution kept such good records. I am drawing upon a variety of recent studies here, and the reader looking for all the useful and sordid complexity of Inquisitorial history and development, and its place in Spanish life, may find it as follows: For more on the scene in Toledo and details of the auto-da-fé, see the authoritative Kamen, The Spanish Inquisition, pp. 205–213. In the same volume is a excellent chapter on Inquisitorial operations, pp. 174–192. And see also Kamen’s review of trials and punishments, pp. 193–213. Kamen has a superb review of the political background, pp. 28–65. For a condensed and brilliant study in Spanish of the Inquisition, look to Pérez de Colosia, “La Inquisición: estructura y actuación,” passim. For an examination of Inquisitorial trials, tortures, and punishments, and their relation to modern totalitarianism, see Perez, The Spanish Inquisition, pp. 133–175. In the same volume, for a concise review of the administrative organization, see pp. 101–132. And for the comparison to Stalinist trials and other forms of state terror, see his conclusion, pp. 222–225. For an examination of the Inquisition in relation to the modern world, including torture practiced by the United States of America during the administration of Richard Cheney and George W. Bush, see Murphy, God’s Jury, pp. 223–251. On the relation of the Inquisition to the Spanish pope, the sybarite and murderer Rodrigo Borgia, see Reston, The Dogs of God, 279–290. A reader wanting an account in English of a torture as it occurred, duly noted down, as well as a portrayal of an auto-da-fé, see Cowans, Early Modern Spain: A Documentary History, pp. 51–57. For two full descriptions of autos-da-fé, see Constable, Medieval Iberia: Readings From Christian, Jewish, and Muslim sources, pp. 330–342.
204) the ideal occasion for what-if history: For a look at this genre of historical writing, there is a fascinating compendium of texts in Cowen, What If. I am not aware of a what-if essay having been written of the course of Spanish history after 1492, but it would be a most instructive and beneficial exercise, and I pray someone will take it on.
206) to shape the destiny of Spain: Part of this durability is due to the genius of Ferdinand and Isabel for propaganda, noted, for example, in the preface of the scholar Peggy Liss in her biography of Isabel, Isabel the Queen, p. xiii. She is quoting the Spanish scholar José Manuel Nieto. As to the durability of Ferdinand and Isabel’s policies, take, for example, the decree of 1492 to expel the Jews from Spain, the so-called Alhambra Decree: It was not formally revoked until 1968. Recently, the government of Spain has begun, over five centuries after the expulsion, a program to welcome back to Spain Sephardic descendants who are currently members of the Jewish community. The program has attracted interest, criticism, and bewilderment.
208) a centerpiece for their financial policy: This is a fascinating macroeconomic story of the national decline of the most prosperous and advanced commercial and scientific culture in Europe. I am, just as in other sections of this book, condensing a wide range of material, as well as drawing on readings in macroeconomics in my own work in the investment community. The most comprehensive treatment, incomparable in its scope of reference and in the riches of scholarly detail, are the three volumes by Stanley J. and Barbara H. Stein: Silver, Trade, and War, Apogee of Empire, and Edge of Crisis. This achievement brings into focus the minutiae of the decline, the massive national corruption, and its disastrous cumulative effect. On the use of silver to support the empire, pay for military operations, and secure debt, see Silver, Trade, and War, pp. 40–56. In the same volume, to review the decisive commercial concessions of the Treaty of Westphalia, see pp. 57–67. For the resultant flow of capital to fund the industrialization of Western Europe, and Spanish collusion in corruption that enriched other countries, see pp. 77–89. For a concise portrait of the failure of Spain to establish a competitive textile manufacturing of woolen goods for domestic and colonial supply, see Apogee of Empire, pp. 210–218. In the same volume, on Spain’s structural economic defects and the inability of the country to invigorate the peninsular economy, see pp. 221–222. On the persistence of a rentier economy in Spain and the failure to develop manufacturing even in the late 1700s, see pp. 354–355. In the Edge of Crisis, to read about the dependence of Spain, as late as 1800, on the silver production and minting in Mexico, see pp. 163–174. For the makeup of Madrid’s budget deficits during this period, see pp. 214–217. For debt financing of military operations in this later period, see pp. 284–286. For the government use of the vast wealth of the church in Spain and the New World, see pp. 296–297. On the conjunction of war and debt leading Spain to crisis, see pp. 476–477. On the role that geography, poor roads, and above all, indirect and regressive taxation played in the painfully slow process of market integration in Spain, see Grafe, Distant Tyranny, pp. 244–245.
211) “In 1557, for example . . .”: Stein, Silver, Trade, and War, p.
default on his own people three times: Graphs and discussion of these defaults can be found in Reinhart and Rogoff, This Time Is Different, pp. 70–71 and 88–89.
212) “Despite the esteem . . .”: Lewis, God’s Crucible, 327.
The commerce of Al-Andalus: Once again, this section draws upon a whole range of scholars. Preeminent among them is Olivia Remie Constable,
in her Trade and Traders in Muslim Spain. For a summary and general conditions and evolution of trade, see pp. 4–12. For a discussion of ports and trading activity, see pp. 17–19. For the fame of the shipyards and markets of Andalusian cities, see pp. 23–27. For the centrality of the dirham of Al-Andalus in North Africa, see p. 35. For trade with the Christian north, see p. 47. On the fascinating tradition of merchant-scholars, see pp. 54–55. On the transition from Jewish and Muslim traders to Christian traders, especially the Genoese, see pp. 62–67. For a general description of the vigor and variety of this trade, see Constable’s article, “Muslim Merchants in Andalusi International Trade,” p. 759.
213) merchant-scholars: See the enlivening material in Constable, , pp. 54–55, 80–85.
practical knowledge pressed into action: For details on mills, textiles, paper, cork-soled shoes, ceramics, glass, clocks, and leathers, see Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, pp. 275–292. For some of the same goods and a sampling of agricultural exports, see Constable, ibid., pp. 169–203. For technology of dyeing, see Bolens, “The Use of Plants for Dyeing and Clothing,” pp. 1008–1012. For more specifics on the silk and furniture industries, see Constable, ibid., pp. 173–181.
214) “. . . so many streets and lanes . . .”: This quote is from Bermudéz de Pedraza, and the full paragraph and a further description of the markets of Granada in Al-Andalus may be found in Dickie, “Granada: A Case Study of Arab Urbanism in Muslim Spain,” p. 95–97.
these markets throve: For an illuminating description of the commerce of the period in the context of Medieval Europe, see Lewis, ibid., pp. 206–208, 279–280, 335. See also a discussion of national income, monetary circulation, population, taxation, and overall economic vigor in Chalmeta, “An Approximate Picture of the Economy of Al-Andalus,” pp. 746–756.
Spanish words connected with market regulation: A set of these words, along with their Arabic roots, is in Messner, “Arabic Words in Ibero- Romance Languages,” p. 454.
216) a dramatic shift in attitudes toward work: For example, Constable, idib., p. 67, notes how early this attitude took root, writing that “in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries no Castilian of social standing would have considered a commercial profession.” There are long and valuable discussions of this change in Castro, The Spaniards, pp. 245, 317–321. He writes, for instance, on p. 319, “No other European country so stigmatized manual labor.” In the same volume, on the disdain for commercial and intellectual activity, see p. 159. On the debasement of economic affairs, see p. 364.
217) the animals ate Iberia alive: To learn about the Mesta, see Lowney, A Vanished World, 113–144. On the rise of wool to dominate the export economy of Spain, see Constable, ibid., pp. 227–229. On the peninsular reach of grazing herds and the participation of military orders in the south with extensive landholdings, see Fletcher, Moorish Spain, p. 147. On Ferdinand and Isabella’s dependence on revenues from the Mesta to finance their military adventures and other crown expenses, and the concentration of land among the nobles and military orders, see Liss, Isabel the Queen, pp. 276–277. On the long-term ecological damage of such transhumant pastoralism, with its cumulative destruction of the once-verdant landscape of Andalusia and Castile, see Glick, Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, pp. 105–109. For a brilliant analysis of this phenomenon in a wider Mediterranean context, see Eisenberg, The Ecology of Eden, pp. 211–212.
irrigated agriculture: An excellent source is the pioneering and careful work of Carmen Trillo San José. To gain a pictorial sense of the transition from dry agriculture to the irrigated systems of Al-Andalus, see her Agua, tierra y hombres en Al-Andalus, pp. 171–176. Illustrations of how irrigated land was owned and managed, along with some statistical figures on ownership, are on pp. 161–170. On the pertinent Islamic customs and the family organization of agricultural lands, see pp. 157–159. On coming of irrigation to dryland agriculture and the subsequent division of irrigated land among a multitude of small holders, see pp. 35–59. As to Granada itself, see Carmen Trillo San Jose, Agua y paisaje en Granada. For her analysis of the sociopolitical dimension of irrigated agriculture and discussions of polyculture, see pp. 83–101. For a treatment in English of the agricultural variety of Al-Andalus, the so-called Arab “green revolution” in Iberia, see Glick, ibid., pp. 70–75.
218) “The ordered landscape . . .”: Glick, ibid., p.
219) the latifundia: For a historical discussion of their essentially feudal nature, see V.K. Fitzgerald, “Latifundia,” pp. 204–205. For more details on the system of the latifundia as it evolved and the failure of agrarian reform in the early nineteenth century, see Harrison, An Economic History of Modern Spain, pp. 25–26. For statistics on the dominance of the latifundia, the harsh labor conditions, and the relation to rural anarchism, see pp. 105–108. Since a theme of this book is the remarkable durability and influence of some of the important initiatives of Fernando and Isabel, it is instructive to consider the crucial role the latifundistas played in the military rebellion of 1936 that began the Spanish Civil War, and their active participation in the campaign of extermination that followed. See Preston, The Spanish Holocaust, pp. 20, 30, 32–33, 55, 57, 67, 70, 125, 135, 141, 148, for a sampling. The book is replete with examples of the close and murderous cooperation between large landowners, the rebels, and the fascist party.
“. . . came to possess almost half the arable land in Spain.” Castro, The Spaniards, p. 245.
220) Education declined in quality in Spain: See, for example, Crow, Spain: The Root and the Flower, 234–235. On the banning and burning of books by the Inquisition, the most concise account is Perez, The Spanish Inquisition, pp. 177–195.
221) in a wholehearted effort to find the eminent Spaniards in science: Take, for instance, the Smithsonian Timeline of Science, which catalogs and illustrates the scientific progress of humankind. In the period from 1492 to 1900, I found only two Spaniards: the sixteenth century physician Michael Servetus, who spent almost all of his professional life outside of Spain and was a Protestant, and Diego Aguilera, who in 1793 flew a glider.
book-burning: Perez, ibid., pp. 180–182. See also Baez, Historia universal de la destrucción de libros, pp. 125–129. Baez notes, as well, that books, for example, of Ibn Hazm were burned in Seville in Al-Andalus. And in Al-Andalus, the books of the Sufis were sometimes burned by Islamic fundamentalists. It was not only Christians who burned books.
222) “These people also used certain characters . . .” for Diego Landa’s description of his incineration of Mayan culture, see Landa, Yucatan Before and After the Conquest, p.
224) “Indeed, the notion of re–conquest . . .”: Glick, ibid., p. 34.
“The European Conquest of the Americas . . .”: Harvey, Muslims in Spain, 1500 to 1614, pp. 291–292.
226) “. . . the shadow of Spain . . .”: Stein and Stein, Silver, Trade, and War,
227. “Spain’s decline had multiple facets”: Stein and Stein, ibid., p.
228) “What had been inherited . . .”: Stein and Stein, ibid., p.
A country of seigneurial privilege: For a wealth of detail on the stratification of Spanish society during this complex period, see Stein and Stein, ibid., 93–94, 104–105, 144, 158, 262–263, 266. On flow of silver to the other countries of Europe, see pp. 7–8, 17–18, 23, 25, 27, 48, 50, 52, 77. On the reduction of Spain to a commodity economy, see pp. 9, 34. On the enrichment of the rest of Europe, as it developed market, trading, and financial expertise, see pp. 16, 35, 55–56, 59, 63–64, 71, 101, 149–150, 226. On the ferocious demand of the military on the state treasury, see, for example, pp. 41,43, 45–46, 53. For a look at how the process played out over time, see the summary statements in Nadall, El fracaso de devolución industrial en España, pp. 226–228. For another look at a later period, with respect to landholdings, see Harrison, An Economic History of Modern Spain, pp. 5–6. In the same book, for details of the failures of the 1800s, see the chapter “An Industrial Revolution Manqué,” pp. 43–65. For another dimension of the scholarly work of the period, see a few of the tables, for example, p. 14, in El legado económico del antiguo régimen en España. What is fascinating is that all the figures begin in 1500, as though Al-Andalus did not exist at all. So even though the earnings shown for inhabitants of Holland and England surge past and ultimately double those of Spain in the period 1500–1820, the figures still do not take into account that Spain, on every commercial, financial, and technical front, had an enormous head start on every other country in Europe.
230) There will be bitter attacks: Anyone who has discussed these matters in educated company in Spain will know how deep and furious conversation can become, even in the present day, once anyone begins to address the history of Al-Andalus, the subsequent decline of Spain, or the civil war that began in 1936. It is as though fact is napalm, and the most straightforward statement can be taken as explosive attack on the national character of all of Spain. But this book does not in any way intend or imply any such attack. Though our subject is, in part, the history of the Albayzín, Al-Andalus, and Spain after Ferdinand and Isabel, the economic and sociopolitical evolution covered in this book is relevant to any society, and similar evolution can occur, and has occurred, in any society. I simply do not think that violent conversation is a good use of life, and I will not accept the notion that the presentation of facts obtained by honest effort makes any person vile and contemptible.
231) exterminating angels: The reader will be aware that this view of mine is at variance, to put it as mildly as possible, with that of many esteemed historians who see Ferdinand and Isabel as admirable figures in history, whose greatness brought empire and honor to Spain. I encourage wholeheartedly the encounter with the work of such historians, so that the different views can be brought into focus. Two excellent contemporary examples are Thomas, Rivers of Gold: The Rise of the Spanish Empire From Columbus to Magellan. And in Spanish, Ladero Quesada, La España de los Reyes Católicas. Both these books offer detailed, scholarly, and laudatory engagements with the Catholic Monarchs.
232) “. . . the suffering of women in the prison . . .”: Preston, The Spanish Holocaust, 511. Lest anyone think I am noting a rare abuse by Franco and his cohorts, let me emphasize that the humiliation, rape, and murder of women by Franco’s military was standard practice throughout Spain during the Civil War, and in its aftermath. See, for example, Preston, ibid., pp. 149, 156, 158–9, 160, 166, 204–205, 313, 333–4, 448, 478.
233) The yoke and arrows: In the rhetoric of the military rebels and their allies in the Catholic Church, their political initiative was linked directly to Ferdinand and Isabel. See, for example, the written declaration of the fascist Onésimo Redondo, Preston, , p. 46, in which he identifies the Spanish working class with the Arabs and praises Isabel for her militant fight against “the Moorish spirit.” See also the speech on National Radio by the canon of the cathedral in Salamanca, Aniceto de Castro Albarrán, quoted in Preston, ibid., pp. 197–198, in which he cries, “Up with the Spirit of Isabel la Católica!” And the speech by Franco on New Year’s Eve, 1939, in which he praised the Nazi aggressions against Jews, and links their actions, appreciatively, with Ferdinand and Isabel, Preston, ibid., 471–472. Grand Cross of the Imperial Order of the Yoke and Arrows: For the awarding of this honor to Himmler, see Preston, ibid., p. 490.
“. . . We must be listened to . . .”: Levi, The Drowned and the Saved, 199.
234) “the only historic instrument . . .”: in an essay by Rivera, quoted in Payne, Fascism in Spain, p. 170.
“prepare to revolt . . .”: quoted in Payne, ibid., p. 171. José Antonio Primo de Ribero was one of the principal figures who led Spain into the cataclysm of Civil War. For his commitment to violence, see Preston, The Spanish Holocaust, p. 110. For his active direction of the Falange—the Spanish fascists—as he coordinated its work with the military conspiracy, see Preston, ibid., pp. 117–119. Jose Antonio thought that the Falange would “receive the laurels earned by being first in this holy crusade of violence,” Preston, ibid., p. 118.
“We regard Italian Fascism as the most outstanding. . .”: quoted in Payne, ibid., p. 162.
A FEw NOTIONS OF GEOMETRy AND REVELATION
237) the city’s most bizarre stories: A useful account may be found in Jacobs, Alhambra, pp. 51–67. The book is full of artful, well-chosen color photographs by Francisco Fernández. For a finely written examination of the history of the building, see Irwin, The Alhambra, pp. 15–67. Irwin’s book is a searching and scholarly study of the whole complex, and his reflections are of exceptional value throughout. He suggests, for instance, that the complex around the Patio de los Leones may have been a school, since it so closely resembles schools in Morocco. Another recent, wonderful book is Puerta Vílchez, Leer la Alhambra, which gives us, for the first time, a complete translation into Spanish of all the poetry inscribed into the walls of the Alhambra. For those interested in the physical setting and the geological underpinnings of the Alhambra, see Salmerón Escobar, The Alhambra: Structure and Landscape, pp. 80–91.
240) a book to which he gave his life and fortune: Any of us may go online to the Internet Archive and download this entire world-changing book onto a computer desktop. It gives the savor of the time and a sense of the infinite labors necessary to create such a volume. Fabulous drawings and illustrations of the Alhambra in the 1834–1842 period. The reference is Jones, Plans, Elevations, Sections, and Details of the Alhambra.
241) Pythagoras thought that the world: For some reflections on the place of Pythagoras in the Islamic prophetic tradition, see Nasr, Knowledge and the Sacred, pp. 34–35. For his ideas on the change from qualitative mathematics to purely quantitative mathematics, see pp. 46–47. For Pythagorean harmony in relation to Western science, see pp. 193–194. For a more in-depth discussion of Pythagoras in relation to the great Ikhwan Al-Safa (The Brethren of Purity), see Nasr, Islamic Cosmological Doctrines, pp. 34–39. Nasr gives crucial context for understanding how Pythagorean ideas, Islamic scientific work, and mystical experience informed the use of mathematics. For a much more full, detailed, and popular treatment of Pythagoras, see Ferguson, The Music of Pythagoras, passim.
242) “laboring for some poor portionless man . . .”: from Walter Shewring’s brilliant translation of the Odyssey, p.
243) Its scholars took up the scientific and philosophical heritage: For a comprehensive look at the translating work in Baghdad, see al-Khalili, The House of Wisdom, pp. 67–78.
244) “the science of numbers . . .”: quoted in Critchlow, Islamic Patterns: An Analytical and Cosmological Approach, 42.
246) the idea that numbers mean something: The following exposition about the qualitative and associative properties of numbers is taken from a variety of sources. And the historical resonance of each number is far richer than I have portrayed in my condensed version. See, for example, the sections about each of the whole numbers, in Schimmel, The Mystery of Numbers. The best way to understand the use and meaning of the whole numbers, conceived as part of a sacred undertaking, is to read straight through Critchlow, ibid., who has unusual and revelatory material on the subject. To look at a modern scientific treatment of numbers in relation to geometry and natural form, see Stevens, Patterns in Nature, and Ball, The Self-Made Tapestry: Pattern Formation in Nature. These books are current, reverent treatments of universal patterns in nature, and so at least to this reader they bear upon the meaning of pattern as it unfolds in the artful tile work of Al-Andalus. For a more playful and participatory treatment, one might try Schneider, A Beginner’s Guide to Constructing the Universe: The Mathematical Archetypes of Nature, Art, and Science, for example his chapter on threefold symmetry, pp. 38–59. If a reader wants to sit down and produce the intricate designs of the tile work herself, the indispensable book is Broug, Islamic Geometric Patterns. It is an excellent chance to see the way the most complex patterns spring to life, though you will be using nothing more than a compass and straightedge.
249) The golden ratio: For a summary and exposition of this abundantly present and beautiful mathematical relation, see Huntley, The Divine Proportion, passim.
250) What if these tiles are meant to teach?: This whole discussion is derived from my own experience of the walls of tiles in the Alhambra and my discussion of the designs with many informed visitors, especially Alexandra It also takes up the Sufi insistence that beauty does more than enliven the mind and exalt the senses; beauty is instrumental, and may be used to create new capacities of perception.
258) plane crystallographic group theory: For a discussion of the seventeen groups in relation to the geometry and symmetries in the Alhambra, see, for example, Irwin, ibid., pp. 118–120.
Penrose diagram: See Lu, “Decagonal and Quasi-Crystalline Tilings in Medieval Islamic Architecture.” For a newspaper summary of the article, see Wilford, “In Medieval Architecture, Signs of Advanced Math.” The New York Times, 27 February 2007, Section D, page 2.
259) As Jesus put it in the Nag Hammadi Gospels: The quotation is from the beautiful translation by Thomas Lambdin of the Gospel of Thomas in the Nag Hammadi Gospels, p.
261) The tambourine is in the hands of a woman named Fatima: The following material of the work, thought, and life of Ibn El-Arabi is condensed from many sources. For a couple of detailed, accessible accounts of the life of Ibn El-Arabi, see the two introductions of W.J. Austin to Ibn El-Arabi’s works Sufis of Andalusia and The Bezels of Wisdom. The material on Fatima is in Austin, Sufis of Andalusia, pp. 25–26. Fine and reflective material on the life of the mystic and poet may be found in Nasr, Three Muslim Sages, pp. 92–97. Additional information about his life and a valuable contemporary selection of passages from his poetry and philosophy are in Shah, The Way of the Sufi, pp. 83–89.
262) Ibn El-Arabi met Averroes: The story of this encounter between two of the most influential men in the whole medieval period is told in Austin, Introduction, Sufis of Andalusia, pp. 23–24.
263) “On another occasion . . .”: this quote by Ibn El-Arabi is in Austin, , p. 27.
264) “a slender child . . .”: quoted in Austin, , p. 36. To read about Ibn El–Arabi’s statements that on the contemplation of God in women, see The Bezels of Wisdom, p. 275.
265) “know that when worldly desires . . .”: quoted in Austin, ibid., pp. 44–45.
266) How did they live?: All these practical and mystical friends of Ibn El-Arabi, and many more, of the most miscellaneous and fantastical capacities, are found in Sufis of Andalusia,
269) This is just what Sufism claims to possess: Once again, I must warn that these statements of mine are a few drops of water in the ocean of writing by and about the Sufis. There is simply no way at all to summarize in a chapter or a book, much less in an endnote, the many sources in poetry, stories, and expository writing for my brief summary. Yet one cannot write usefully about Spain and Al-Andalus without taking on the subject. For those who seek an initiatory essay on the Sufis which has its own extensive endnotes, see the introduction by Idries Shah to his collection The Way of the Sufi. The works of Idries Shah, in my view, offer an extraordinary portal into the Sufi tradition, and a partial list of his books may be found in the bibliography. Shah’s major works are all available in Spanish. For a beautiful sampling of Sufi poetry, see the work of the twelfth-century Hakim Sanai, The Walled Garden of Truth, in the translation by the gifted David Pendlebury. For a source in Spanish on the unity of revelation, see Ibn El-Arabi, Tratado de la unidad. A valuable contemporary and anonymous book in Spanish is Textos Sufis, published in Argentina. For a more academic exposition of Sufi ideas and many translations of poetry, see Schimmel, As Through a Veil: Mystical Poetry in Islam.
270) “The King sent a private mission . . .”: Shah, The Exploits of the Incomparable Mulla Nasrudin, p.
“Call yourself unlucky . . .”: Shah, The Dermis Probe, p.
“If you do not want to be dismissed . . .”: ‘Ata’Illah, Ibn, The Book of Wisdom, p. 103.
“There is a light deposited in hearts . . .”: ‘Ata’Illah, Ibn, ibid., p. 152.
272) “How can the laws of nature be ruptured . . .”: ‘Ata’Illah, Ibn, ibid., 78.
“I will not serve God like a labourer . . .”: Shah, The Way of the Sufi, p. 180.
“If you do not shave your head . . .”: a quotation from the fifteenth-century teacher Hakim Jami, selected and translated in Shah, ibid., p. 103.
273) “The Blind Ones and the Matter of the Elephant”: Shah, Tales of the Dervishes, p.
ON FLAMENCO, POETRY, GENIUS, AND MURDER
281) Lorca presented a lecture: Lorca, Obras completas, pp. 1067–1079.
282) “The magical virtue of poetry”: Lorca, ibid., p.
283) A bewildering and exultant variety of forms: For a description in English of the forms of flamenco, with learned commentary by a practitioner of the art, see Pohren, The Art of Flamenco, pp. 109–187.
285) “A cinnamon angel . . .”: For the original Spanish of these and the rest of the cited verses, see Pohren, ibid.. This song is on pp. 149–150.
286) “The world I live in . . .”: Pohren, ibid., p.
“I saw her black eyes . . .”: Pohren, ibid., p. 171.
“Misfortune falls upon me . . .”: Pohren, ibid., p. 168.
287) Lorca’s talk: The text of this presentation, called “El Cante Jondo,” is in Lorca, Obras completas, pp. 973–994.
“. . . cante jondo is like the trill of birds . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p. 975.
“preserve their Arabic and Moorish affiliation”: L.P. Harvey, Muslims in Spain: 1500 to 1614, p. 75, notes the Arab elements in flamenco music. For an extended examination and analysis of both Arabic and Jewish sources of flamenco, see Roldan, El flamenco y la música andalusí, pp. 15–30.
D.E. Pohren, when he constructed his genealogy: Pohren, ibid., pp. 112–114.
288) “The gypsy siguiriya begins with a terrible cry . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p.
“It is not a matter of coincident sources . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p. 976.
“The adoption by the Spanish church of liturgical chanting . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p. 976–977.
“. . . some Andalusian songs”: Lorca, ibid., p. 978.
“. . . we must cry out in defense . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p.
“It is deep, truly deep . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p. 982.
“It is the song of night . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p. 985.
290) “All the poems of cante jondo show . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p.
“Just as the siguiriya . . .”: Lorca, ibid., p. 989.
None other than Hafiz and Omar Khayyam: It is useful, I think, in reading Lorca, to get a sense of this mystical background. For an extended engagement with Omar Khayyam, I do not know of a better text than the translation and extended commentary by Govinda Tirtha, called The Nectar of Grace. It is a rare and exceptionally useful book. For a contemporary translation of Hafiz and the poets of his beloved city of Shiraz, see Faces of Love, where the verse is translated ably by the fine poet Dick Davis.
291) The Concurso on June 13 and 14 of 1922: An extended description of this event is in Gibson, Federico García Lorca: A Life, pp. 112–166. Another account, which emphasizes Lorca’s close bond with Falla at the time, is in Stainton, Lorca: A Dream of Life, pp. 91–101.
292) “When he read the Poem of Deep Song . . .”: quoted in Stainton, ibid., p. 100.
293) La Barraca: This educational initiative coincided with the overall commitment of the Republic to education; thousands of schools were Accounts of Lorca in this period on the road doing theater are in Gibson, ibid., pp. 319–324, 330–334, and in Stainton, ibid., pp. 283–304.
295. “. . . an effervescent child . . .”: quoted in Stainton, ibid., p. 335.
298) He told the director, Rivas Cherif: The most complete account of the context and content of this conversation is in Stainton, , pp. 412–114.
299) “. . . a disastrous event”: quoted in Gibson, ibid., p.
300) “I am totally Spanish . . .”: quoted in Gibson, ibid., p.
301) On July 13, Lorca boarded the train for Granada: For the complete accounts of the lethal chain of events that led to his murder, see the pioneering work of Gibson, , pp. 446–472. And the later biography of Lorca by Stainton, ibid., pp. 440–461.
304) At around three in the morning on August 18: A recent account establishing the date, which had been somewhat in question, is in the short text of Titos Martinez, Verano de 36 en For an understanding of the context and the correspondence discovered and presented in the book, it needs to be read in its entirety.
305) one of the executioners: His name was Juan Luis Trascastro He was a local Falangist leader and had earlier declared that he was ready to “slit the throats of any reds including breast-feeding babies.” See Preston, The Spanish Holocaust, pp. 173–174.
THE SECRET IN THE LABYRINTH
308) discovered in a crate: The poetry of Ismail ibn Neghrela, whose Hebrew name is Shmuel HaNagid. This story is told in the introduction by Peter Cole to his translation of the Selected Poems of Shmuel HaNagid, pp. xiv–xv. For an even more extraordinary story about the recovery of four thousand poems of medieval Hebrew poetry, a priceless treasure, just before they were burned in a fire to heat a kitchen pot, see Cole’s introduction to the Selected Poems of Solomon Ibn Gabirol, pp. 10–11.
311) “The color of the Angel Gabriel’s wings . . .”: However unlikely it might seem to anyone, this is an exact transcription of what she said. Her declaration was so sudden, and so detailed, that as soon as she had gone into her ballet class, I sat down and wrote out her words in my notebook, so that I could have them down accurately.