Words in Arabic or of Arabic origin:


Alarife, al-arif, master builder.

Albanega, al-baniqa, triangular ornaments on the sides of an arch.

Albarrana, al-barrana, tower erected outside the fortification walls, for control and defence.

Alcaiceria, al-qisariya, a quarter with shops, usually closed, in which precious goods, such as silk used to be sold.

Alcazaba, al-qasbah, fortified enclosure.

Alcazar, al-qasr, fortress, royal house.

Alhóndiga, al-funduq, edificio en el que se alojaban los mercaderes y se almacenaba su mercancía.

Aljama, al-yami, major mosque.

Almogavar, al-mugawir, in the old militia, a soldier from a select platoon that went behind enemy lines.

Almotacen, al-muhtasib, official in charge of watching over the proper functioning of the market

Almuedano, al-muaddin, (muezzin) person who calls to prayer from the minaret.

Almunia, al-munya, orchard, country house surrounded by farmland that also was used as recreational estate.

Ataurique, al-tauriq, Arabian vegetal-type of decoration.

Caliph, jalifa, Title given to the leader of a Muslim community who represented spiritual and civil power.

Cora, kura, territorial division within al-Andalus.

Emir, amir, Arab prince or leader.

Haram, main hall of a mosque.

Hisba, Hisba treaties ensured the proper functioning of the souk.

Imam, Muslim man who conducts prayers.

Iqlim,administrative division in Muslim Spain (al-Andalus)

Madraza, al-madrasa, Muslim college for higher studies.

Maristan, Arab hospital.

Medina, al-madinat, a Muslim town

Mihrab, niche oriented towards Mecca in the Qibla wall in Mosques

Mocarabe, al­muqarnas, geometric combination of prisms, used for decorating domes.

Morisco, baptized Muslim who stayed on after the conquest was accomplished.

Mozarab, mustarab, Christian who remained as a tribute payer in Muslim Spain, keeping his ecclesiastic and judicial organization and his religion.

Mudejar, mudayyan, Muslim who was allowed to live under Christian domination, keeping his religion.

Muladi, muwallad, Hispano­-Christian who became a Muslim under Mohammedan domination.

Qanat, underground water piping.

Qibla, alquibla, point on the horizon and wall of a mosque that Muslims face when praying.

Rabida, ribat, Muslim military and religious fortress.

Sebka, typically Almohad decorative motif imitating a net or honeycomb

Sufi, suf –wool–, Muslim mystic.

Taha, ta’a, district.

Taifa, ta’ifa, each of the kingdoms into which al-Andalus was split when the caliphate came to an end.

Wali, governor of a province in the Muslim state.

Zejel, zayal, strophe composition in Spanish metre of Arab origin.



Art and Architecture

The Scientific and Cultural Legacy

Daily Life


Subscribe to our Newsletter

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Join the e-mail list of El legado andalusí to receive the last news on the Foundation.

Thanks for subscribing!

Share This