Water Technologies in Andalucía


IWA Specialized Conference on Water&Wastewater Technologies in Ancient Civilizations, Turkey, 01 March 2012, pp.587-597

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • Country: Turkey
  • Page Numbers: pp.587-597


The life source water and the necessary legal regulations in order for the water to be used in the fields of need, the construction of systems and techniques are the distinctive features of Islamic civilization. Water has widely been used in agriculture, industry and daily life in Islamic societies. Depending on the importance of water, detailed rules/legal regulations and systems emerged on water and the use of water. For the delivery of water to the needed fields from its source required collection, storage and circulation technologies. The Muslims who dispersed in an expansive geography developed the techniques they met in Rome, Iran, China or India and adapted them to the regions they conquered and settled. The Muslims settled in the Iberian Peninsula in the wake of its conquest, brought the water technologies which they had been using in other regions to Andalusia. They adapted the techniques they had been using in Syria, Egypt and North Africa to the geographical features of the peninsula. The water collected in dams, was carried to the agricultural and settlement areas through main canals and stored in the tank and poles through collateral canals. The water collected in tanks and poles distributed to settlement and agricultural lands through canals. Norias were used for raising water from rivers, dams, canals and wells. For lifting ground water to the surface qanat technique was employed. Thanks to the expansive irrigation system, it was possible to implement irrigation farming in Andalusia where dry summers were common. As a result the residents of Andalusia could bring up rice, sugar cane and several fruits which were impossible to cultivate in Mediterranean climate. In rural and urban areas, the water had been distributed to meet the needs of mosques, public baths and houses.