Against Gravity

Christopher Courault

Full Paper
The Masonry of the City Wall of Cordoba from the 2nd Century BC until 19th Century
Not many edifices have maintained their main structure during centuries. However, the City Wall has always conserved their function as securitas, dignitas or identity model. In this sense, the City Wall contains the keys to understand a large process of construction, which assimilates the tradition and innovation of the masonry. Therefore, thanks to the archaeological investigation, we can approach to a detailed analysis, which highlights the evolution of the masonry used from the foundation of the city (IInd B.C.), and the formation of the new City Wall circuit (ampliation in High Empire, new circuit of the City Wall in Islamic and Christian period); without forgetting the topic of reparation.

Our objective is to apply a diachronically perspective to determine with more precision when the change of masonry occurred and when they started using two different techniques of construction. We are going to purpose some reflexions to explain the continuity or rupture about the different ways to build and choice of materials. By this reason we are integrating a historical vision, so as to determine the reasons about reconstruction and reforms in each sector investigated in the specific case of Cordoba. The investigation of Cordoba is fundamental due to the importance of this city within the urban history; it was one of the most important colonias, and then it became capital of conventus romanorum, being during the medieval period one of the most important metropolis, especially in the Xth century. Unfortunately, the XIXth century symbolizes the fallen of the City Wall, although several parts of the defense circuit have been restituted. That is why we aim to conclude our work by establishing a masonry typology with respect to the chronology.