Torre de Comares
Palace and Tower in Granada
The Torre de Comares or Comares Tower, is a tower-palace Palacio de Comares. Which is one of the palaces that make up the Palacio Nazaríes in the Alhambra Complex, in Granada, Spain. It is one of the largest, standing at 45 meters, and most spectacular towers in the Alhambra and Generalife. The exterior austerity of the Comares tower, with few window openings with gargoyles on its facades, contrasts with its interior richness.
What is inside the Torre de Comares?
The is located inside the tower. In this hall the emirs would have conducted negotiations with Christian emissaries. It has a marvelous domed marquetry ceiling contains more than 8000 cedar pieces in a star pattern representing the seven heavens of Islam.
Sala de la Barca or Hall of the Blessing, with a beautiful wooden ceiling.
Between the walls of the Sala de la Barca and those of the Salón de los Embajadores there is a narrow passage with two doors. The left door leads to the higher chambers of the tower and the sultan’s winter bedchamber with an exit to the tower’s spacious balcony. The right door leads to a chamber that has a niche at the back, with a pointed horseshoe arch decorated with stylized vegetal forms. This niche was a small oratory exclusively used by the emir
The tower has several windows on its four façades, with gargoyles such as those on the Torre de la Justicia and merlons that were rounded off with pyramidal elements in the 16th century.
Where does the Torre de Comares get its name?
There are a number of theories regarding where the name Torre de Comares comes from. The most accepted is the one that says that it comes from the “comarías“, there were stained glass windows that closed the nine balconies and light the the Salón de los Embajadores. However Comares also means “stay or seat of the throne” and may have come from the Arabic place-name Qumarish or Comares as the artisans who worked on the tower may have come from the fortress town of that name.
Legends of the Torre de Comares
Legend says that when the Council that decided to surrender the city of Granada to the Catholic Monarchs took place inside this tower. The story tells that when Boabdil‘s mother learnt that her son was negotiating the surrender with the Christians, she told him, from one of the tower’s balconies: “Look at what you surrender and remember that all your forebears died being kings of Granada and the kingdom dies in you”.
It was also inside this tower that Christopher Columbus convinced the Catholic Monarchs to give their approval to his expeditions to the Indies towards the West, which lead to discovering America on October 12th 1492, and that the Queen offered her jewelry to sponsor the journey.
Who built the Torre de Comares?
Yusuf I was the one who started its construction, in the first half of the 14th century, and his son Muhammad V the one who finished it.
Other names of Torre de Comares
The Torre de Comares has the following names: Torre de Comares, Comares Tower.
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Visiting Torre de Comares
For opening times of the Torre de Comares see Alhambra Opening Times.