Toledo City of Three Cultures
A throughout its long history, Toledo has always been known as a city of tolerance or the City of Three Cultures, with the coexistence of Jews, Muslims and Christians.
The city was never a clearly divided by neighborhoods of each of the religions, but there are areas of greater influence of each.
Toledo was Christian since the fourth century, being part of the Roman Empire, it was during the Visigothic kingdom (struggling with the Arian doctrine) and spent the centuries of coexistence between the three religions, Muslim, Jewish and Catholic, to arrival of the Reconquista.
In the seventeenth century, then "city convent" had nearly seventy ecclesiastical buildings or related uses such as schools, hospices, hospitalitos, chapels.
The Oldest Established churches as Santa Justa and Rufina, were remodeled several times, according to the needs and tastes of their patrons. After the confiscations nineteenth century, many of these buildings started to have civilian uses, private or administrative.
The urban structure of Toledo is Arab, with its narrow, winding streets, its houses whose roofs almost touch, but the windows never look ahead. Buildings that enclose public view your most precious jewels, the greenery-filled courtyards, tiled fountains. Of the dozen mosques that existed two left, the Cristo de la Luz, in the year 999 and the lathe, somewhat later.
The mosque was on the current site of the cathedral, but it seems that there was a remarkable building, only spacious to accommodate all the male inhabitants of the city. The area of the Alcázar and the current Museum of Santa Cruz with its area adjacent to the Puente de Alcántara, had walls that separated the citadel itself, its garrison and palaces, the rest of the city.
The southern suburbs, adjacent to the river, were occupied by the tanneries, dyeing and other water-related facilities. It is assumed that there built his legendary aquatic watch and calendar Azarquiel the great astronomer.
Alfonso VI doors or hinge Vieja, the Vado and Alcantara and Twelve Cantos have Arab structures. The wheel on the banks of the Tagus, in the park Safont is inheritance Muslim irrigation techniques. But above all, the most obvious legacy is omnipresent Moorish aesthetics in architecture and decoration with the use of brick, masonry, interlocking the various arches, the wooden ceilings and rich plasterwork, used for centuries in all types of buildings , including the cathedral.
The only two synagogues still standing today induce call the neighborhood where they are, the Jewish Quarter, where there is the highest concentration of the Jewish population, but actually in the city came to be a total of ten synagogues scattered throughout his site.
Your limit would be the former parish of St. Martin in the vicinity of the Puerta del Cambron and the remains of defensive constructions above the Puente de San Martín, traditionally called the Castle of the Jews, in line almost straight up the street from Angel . Here we find the Jewish Gate XII century to the beginning of which there are remains of houses, ritual baths in their basements. Also the area of Commercial Street and the site occupied since the fourteenth century the cathedral cloister was known as the Jewish Quarter or Alcanáa.
Trade was one of the main activities of the Jews, who lived above their shops and workshops. It is not excluded that there were no Jews in Silver Street, were recognized as silversmiths, or any other part of the city.