THE PATIOS OF CORDOBA Intangible Cultural Heritage
These were named as of INTANGIBLE WORLD HERITAGE in 2012 by the UNESCO.
This living heritage refers to practices, knowledge and skills transmitted by communities from generation to generation
To find the origin of the courtyards of Cordoba, we must have a look at ancient civilizations such as the Babylonian and Greek. These cultures also used to build their houses around a central courtyard, where both, social and family activity took place in the house. These civilizations, especially the Greek, settled in Iberia bringing probably its architecture.
However, the current “patio” derives from the Roman courtyard: inward looking, light and air had to penetrate through the central area, the atrium with a fountain or central well, around which the other rooms in the house were distributed. The main entrance was the “vestibulum” with no steps (or very few).
Later, the Arabs added the entrance hall and the “RIAT” with flowers and water to increase its freshness