Flavours of Spain

The Alhambra - Part 6


The Christian Rooms and the Palace of Charles V


Ferdinand and Isabella were stunned by the beauty of the Alhambra Palace, compared with the medieval castles they were used to,  and made it their base. Their grandson Charles V commissioned a suite of rooms built around the Court of Lindaraja, while his new palace was being built.

Christian Rooms, The Alhambra

Charles never visited to watch the progress of his new palace, so the rooms were never used and remain unfurnished. The author Washington Irving lived in some of them in 1829.

Christian Rooms, The Alhambra

Christian Rooms, The
                  Alhambra

The Palace of Charles V was designed as a massive Renaissance building, and as a symbol of the power and status of the new Catholic rulers of Spain. The bottom is made of massive beviled stones. The upper part is dressed stone. There are medallions above the windows and carved friezes along the front with scenes from the Battle of Pavia, when the armies of Charles V had crushed the French army.

Palace of Charles V, The Alhambra

Palace of Charles V, The Alhambra

Palace of Charles V, The
                Alhambra

Palace of Charles V, The Alhambra

It dwarfs the Nasrid palaces next to it.

Palace of Charles V, The Alhambra

It is built round a magnificent circular courtyard with two tiers of columns. 

Palace of Charles V, The Alhambra

Work started in 1527 but money ran out in 1637 leaving the palace uncompleted. It was never lived in as the court had moved to Madrid. It was finally finished in the mid C20th. It now houses two museums - the Museum of the Alhambra with a collection of Nasrid and Mudejar Art and the Museum of Fine Arts, with work from the C17-C20th.

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