Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition/Granada (2.)
GRANADA, the capital of the above province, is situated at the confluence of the Darro and the Genii, not far from the base of the Sierra Nevada (37 13 N. lat., 3 41 W. long.). Different suggestions have been made as to the etymology of the name, which is rather obscure, the least
[ Map of Granada. ]
probable being that it is derived from granada, " a pome granate," in allusion to the abundance of pomegranate trees in its neighbourhood. The Moors called it Karnattah or Karnattah-al-Yahoud, and possibly the name is composed of the Arabic words kurn, " a hill," and nattah, " stranger " the "city" or "hill of strangers." Granada is built partly on level ground near the Genii and partly on the slopes of two adjacent hills, at an elevation of about 2300 feet above the sea. The more ancient quarters of the town still retain much of the Moorish style, but the modern part is somewhat commonplace. It contains several squares, of which the most remarkable is the Bibarrambla, where tournaments were formerly held. There is also a beautiful shady walk, called the Alameda, which is one of the most frequented promenades. The old city comprises the faubourgs of Antequeruela, Alcazaba, Alhambra, and Albaicin, the last being named after the settlers who came from Baeza, after the capture of that city by St Ferdinand. For a detailed account of the Alhambra the reader is referred to the special article, vol. i. p. 570. The Antequeruela and Albaicin are mostly inhabited by the working classes. In the cemetery of the latter there are still a few ruins of an ancient mosque. The town proper contains a great number of churches and other public edifices. The cathedral, a somewhat heavy and irregular building, was begun in 1529 by Diego de Siloe, and finished in 1639. It is profusely ornamented with jasper and coloured marble and surmounted by a dome; and it contains several valuable paintings by Alonso Cano, portraits of Ferdinand and Isabella by Rincon, and marble statues of several kings and queens of Spain. In one of its numerous chapels (the Chapel Royal) are buried their "Catholic Majesties," and Philip and Juana. The church of Nuestra Sefiora de las Angtistias has a splendid high altar and fine towers. That of St Jose" is an elegant modern building. Other remark able edifices are the monastery of St Geronimo, founded by Gouzalo de Cordova, who is buried there; the Carthusian convent (Cartuja) adorned with paintings by Murillo, Morales, and Cano; the university, founded in 1531 by Charles V.; and the library. Granada is the birthplace of many eminent writers and artists, both Mahometan and Christian ; among the latter may be mentioned Fray Luis de Granada (1505); Hurtado de Mendoza (1505), the historian of the war of Granada; Alonso Cano (1601), the great painter ; and Moya (1610), who was both painter and sculptor. The climate of the town is pleasant and healthy, especially during the spring and summer months. Its manu factures are unimportant, the chief being coarse woollen stuffs, hats, paper, saltpetre, and gunpowder. Silk-weaving was once extensively carried on, and large quantities of silk were exported to Italy, France, Germany, and even America ; but the production now is very limited. The education of the lower classes is much neglected, the city having only a few insignificant schools. In the year 1878 the population amounted to about 75,000.
Roman periol(for it is not to be confounded with the ancient Illiberis); and even under the Moors it held a place of very subordinate importance until the period of the conquests of St Ferdinand, when it became the exclusive seat of Islam in Spain, and rose to almost unparalleled splendour, under Mohammed-Ebn- Alahmar, the builder of the Alhambra. It is said in its best days to have had 400,000 inhabitants, 70,000 houses, and 60,000 warriors, but this is probably an exaggeration. In the 15th cen tury it was the last stronghold of the Moors against the Christian forces under Ferdinand and Isabella, and after a long siege it was surrendered by Boabdil on 2d January 1492. From that time Granada s wealth and magnificence rapidly decreased till 1610, whenthe Moors were expelled from Spain.