The Caliphal Baths are Arab baths in Córdoba, Spain. They are situated in the historic centre which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1994. The hammam ("baths) are contiguous to the Alcázar andalusí; ablutions and bodily cleanliness were an essential part of a Muslim's life, mandatory before prayer, besides being a social ritual.
The baths were constructed in the 10th century, under the Caliphate of Al-Hakam II for the enjoyment of the caliph and his court. Between the 11th and 13th centuries, they were used by Almoravids and Almohads, their dynasties noted by the plaster-carved acanthus motif and epigraphic bands of the era, which are stored in the Archaeological and Ethnological Museum of Cordoba. The remains of the baths were found accidentally in 1903 in the Campo Santo de los Mártires, and were subsequently buried. Between 1961 and 1964, a group of city historians recovered them.
Architecture and fittings
They replicated the Roman order of cold, warm and hot water baths. Architectural details include rooms with masonry walls, semicircular arches, and columns with capitals. The ceiling is punctuated by cut-outs of stars.
Media related to Baños califales at Wikimedia Commons