Published by Fons Vitae
By Titus Burckhardt
223 pp, PB.
Description from the publisher --
A unique study of the Moors' arrival to the Iberian peninsula in 711 until the Renaissance, examining the manner of life and the achievements in architecture, poetry, philosophy, religion, and music that developed in Andalusia, the center of the North African Arab empire on the European continent.
The Arab contribution to human progress--astronomy, mathematics, cosmology, the variety and magnificent wealth of architectural form--is a remarkable legacy of a people who entered the land as conquerors and became peaceful masters. From the establishment of the first mosque in Cordova in 785 until the time of their expulsion by the Catholic kings in 1492, the Moors dominated the intellectual life of the area and had a profound impact on European civilization, which assimilated many of their ideas.
The author, Dr. Titus Burkhardt, lived for many years in Morocco. His intimate knowledge of the language and his sensitive translations of Arabic religious and philosophic works won him renown in the academic world. In this beautifully illustrated volume, he united the brilliant artistic fluorescence of Moorish culture with the spiritual and poetic expressions into a wonderfully comprehensive landscape, which no lover of art, no visitor to Spain, no one halfway interested in Spanish art and culture should be without.
Titus Burckhardt, the son of Swiss sculptor Carl Burckhardt, was born in 1908. His youth was devoted to studies in art, art history, and oriental languages and to journeys through North Africa and the Near East. In 1942, he became director of Urs Graf-Verlag, a publishing house specializing in facsimile editions of ancient manuscripts. He remained there until 1968. In addition to writing books in German, he has translated many important works from the Arabic. Of his own books, An Introduction to Sufi Doctrine, Sacred Art in East and West, Moorish Culture in Spain, The Art of Islam, Siena: City of the Virgin, Fez: City of Islam, Chartres, and a collection of his essays Mirror of the Intellect have all appeared in English. The last three, as well as Alchemy, were translated from the German by Dr. William Stoddart.