Until the re-conquest of the last Moorish stronghold at Granada (1492), Andalusia was the region where Europe had turned into a flourishing enclave of the Orient. In the wake of preceding waves of Orientalism, it was there where romantic poets discovered an enchanting new province of world literature. “L’Espagne, c’est encore l’Orient” (“Spain, that’s still the Orient”, Victor Hugo, Les Orientales, 1829).
The rise of Orientalism
Since The Book of Marco Polo (1299), the mysteries of the Orient cast a magic spell over a Western public that reached all the way to the Age of Romanticism and beyond. Although the Ottoman-Turkish Empire closed off direct access to the rich artifacts and spices …
Hoffmeister, Gerhart. "The Alhambra Motif and Orientalism". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 July 2012
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=19325, accessed 28 October 2016.]