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The Writing On The Wall: Reading The Decoration Of The Alhambra

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Chapter Summary

The bridge that carries Robinson's argument from the Aljafería to the Alhambra is a verse inscribed on the wall of a different palace in the Nasrid complex, the Qalahurra al-jadida of Yusuf I, commonly known today as the Tower of the Captive. In this chapter, the author confines himself on an occasion to the context of the Qalahurra al-jadīda, which, Ibn al-Jayyab declares, "speaks badīʿ," where speaking badīʿ means deploying the elements of architectural decoration in accordance with the figurative transformations of the four particular tropes of the badīʿ tradition that Ibn al-Jayyab enumerates. The author also analyses the relationship between Ibn al-Jayyab's deployment of the four poetic tropes and the architectural decoration of the Qalahurra al-jadida with the figure of muraṣṣaʿ, which, in terms of poetic composition, is understood as internal rhyme.

Keywords: Alhambra; Aljafería; badīʿ; Ibn al-Jayyab; muraṣṣaʿ; Nasrid complex; Qalahurra al-jadida

10.1163/ej.9789004175891.i-386.42
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