Ancient Megastructures: The Alhambra

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC – Tuesday 19 May, 7.30pm

The Alhambra is the greatest example of Islamic military architecture in Europe. In 1238, the Moorish Sultan Muhammad I withdrew to Granada, in southern Spain, to create a bastion that would protect his family against Christian attack. It was here, against the backdrop of war and terror that Muhammad began a construction process that would span more than one and a half centuries and create one of the most beautiful palaces in the world. But just how did he construct such an impregnable fortress? How did he raise water from the river 100 metres below, to irrigate its gardens? And why is Greek geometry a crucial part of this Muslim masterpiece? See how ingenious engineering solutions and treacherous political betrayals gave birth to what is arguably the most perfect example of Moorish architecture in existence.

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