The most popular legends of the Alhambra, Granada that are worth knowing

Having a long history dating back centuries and centuries allows different types of myths and legends to emerge. In the case of the Alhambra, we can be sure that this applies even more so, due to all that this monument represents.

Although it is one of the most popular places in Spain, it also has countless legends that have been passed down from one generation to the next. For this reason, below, we want to immerse ourselves among the main legends of the Alhambra, in order to discover the mysteries that lie behind them.

1. The mysterious legend of the Patio de los Leones

The source of the lions is one of the most popular rooms within the Alhambra, and its origin has been an absolute mystery over time. Hence, it is a place with many legends, but that has not been corroborated if they actually existed. One of its most important legends tells that there once existed an Arab princess named Zaira; she made a trip to Al-Andalus and settled in her palace, seeing her own beauty, she was amazed.

Since her father was a very cruel and feared man, she kept her completely isolated. And her mother had passed away many years ago, leaving her only a talisman when the princess was a child. Over time, the princess managed to meet a man with whom she was secretly seeing, and then she fell in love with him. When the king found out about this, he sentenced him to death.

After this, the young woman entered the king’s room, but he was not there. Instead, she found her diary, in which it was expressed that he was not really her father. Instead, he had murdered the real king and queen, the real parents of the princess, along with 11 other men. In this way, Zaira used the talisman around her neck to turn all these men into 12 stone lions.

2. The legend of the sundial

Through time, the Alhambra has been regarded as a giant sundial. This is because, through this place, you can be aware of the course of the hours of the day, according to the way in which the king’s star advances according to the sky, expressed on its tiles. This phenomenon is especially reflected at noon, where the area is divided just in half, generating a shadow effect.

3. The door of justice of the Alhambra

Legend associates the gate of justice with the construction of the Alhambra itself. Through the years, there has been talk of the dedication that went into the construction of this place, both in the decorative field and in the architectural field. It was even ensured that, even if it received the attack of a thousand enemy armies, this building would never fall.

In this way, many assure that the day when the key of the inner arch of the gate of justice joins the hand of its arch; in other words, if the Alhambra falls, it will be because the end of the world has come.

Another legend also assures that the magnificence of this entrance was so great that no knight on horseback could touch the hand of the outer bow with the tip of the spear. Even people were so sure of it, that they said that the knight who succeeded could conquer the throne of the Alhambra.

4. The legend of the three princesses and the rose

The well-known tower of the infantas is a source of the most well-known and beautiful legends. It is said that a king had three daughters, named Zayda, Zorayda and Zorahayda. An astrologer had warned her that they ran the risk of making a marriage that was unworthy of the rank that corresponded to princesses, hence her father locked them in a tower. However, these young women fell in love with 3 knights who had been captured by Muslims.

Masterfully, the 3 princesses got to know the prisoners, and when their families paid the ransom, the young women left with them. However, when fleeing, the youngest, Zorahayda, did not want to leave. So she died young and sad, but after her death, a beautiful rose emerged in her grave, which is known as the rose of the Alhambra.

5. The story of Ahmed al Kamel

In the case of the Generalife gardens, it is also possible to find certain legends that speak of its ponds and fountains. Among them, we can mention the one that relates to Prince Ahmed, who was locked up while he was just a child. In order to prevent a prophecy from being fulfilled that the young man would not do well in love, the king ordered that he be confined in the Generalife along with the philosopher Abben.

As he grew older, he became interested in studies, especially the language of birds. On one occasion, he heard a little bird sing the song of love, and not long after, a bird fell from the sky, and young Ahmed cured it. In return, he asked this bird what love was about.

After knowing this secret or that had been hidden from him all his life, he couldn’t stop thinking about it, and time after time he ran away from the Generalife to see the young ladies at court. Then he fell in love with one of them, and they left together. So everything happened contrary to what they had predicted of him, and they were very happy.

In addition to all these, there is an infinity of legends of the Alhambra, which have been passed from one generation to another. By learning about each of them, it is possible to acquire greater knowledge and enrich our historical and cultural diversity. All this, thanks to one of the most striking places on the planet.

Posted in Europe, Spain.