Oriental Hall
Oriental Hall- - Click Here to See A Larger Version
Oriental Hall
The motifs of Oriental Hall, decorated in 1896, are exemplifications of the Moorish or Saracenic style. Coloring and ornamentation of the Hall have been copied from various parts of Alhambra in Granada, Spain. Construction of this colorful palace (Alhambra, from Arabic kal'-at al hamra, means "the red castle"), was started in the thirteenth century and finished in the fourteenth. The embellishment of Oriental Hall gives some idea of the grandeur and magnificence of this fortress-like palace.

The ceiling is divided into seven thousand panels of various shapes and forms, copied from the "Hall of the Ambassadors." The border surrounding the ceiling, a pattern of the lotus flower, is copied from the "Salon of the Tribunals." Glazed tile designs for the base of the walls and the screens between the arches are replicas of those in the "Court of the Fish Pond." Designs from the same court were used on the wall panels above the columns and the shield ornamented border. Designs for the wall panels above the tile between the columns, the border on each side, the band of arched ornamentation above, and the capitals of the columns are copied from the "Court of the Lions." Ornamented bands above the wall panels are a succession of small arches with a delicate embellishment of intricate lacy design. The border on the sides of and behind the columns are interlacing lines of arches, the inner ones each containing a shield. The borders on the lines of the capitals were copied from the "Hall of the Abencerrages." The soffits of the arches and the spandrels above them (whose designs were suggested by the lotus flower) are from the "Hall of the Two Sisters."

Oriental Hall is fifty-three feet long, forty-one feet wide and twenty-three feet high.
Back

Copyright© 1996-2000 Grand Lodge Of Pennsylvania