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The Mezquita in the evening in Cordoba, Spain on July 28, 2007.  The Mezquita, or mosque in Spanish, took nearly 200 years to build and was the centerpiece of the capital of Al Andalus, as the region was known during nearly 700 years of Arab rule under the Umayyad caliphate when Jews, Christians and Arabs peacefully coexisted; when Christians seized the city in 1236, the mosque was converted into a cathedral and remains a popular tourist attraction among all three communities.