Córdoba, or Cordova in English, is a city in Andalusia, southern Spain, and the capital of the province of Córdoba. It is the largest city in the province, 3rd largest in Andalusia, after Sevilla and Málaga, and the 11th largest in Spain. It was a Roman settlement, taken over by the Visigoths, followed by the Muslim conquests in the eighth century and later becoming the capital of the Caliphate of Córdoba. The city served as the capital in exile of the Umayyad Caliphate and other emirates. During these Muslim periods, Córdoba was transformed into a world leading center of education and learning, producing figures such as Averroes, Ibn Hazm, and Al-Zahrawi, and by the 10th century it had grown to be the second-largest city in Europe. It was conquered by the Kingdom of Castile through the Christian Reconquista in 1236.
Córdoba is home to notable examples of Moorish architecture such as The Mezquita-Catedral, which was named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984 and is now a cathedral. The UNESCO status has since been expanded to encompass the whole historic centre of Córdoba, Medina-Azahara and Festival de los Patios.