Aloe vera (L.) Burm.f.Xanthorrhoeaceae
Used since ancient times for its cosmetic and pharmacological value, aloe looks like it was marketed and imported from East to West by the Arabs around the ninth century. It adapted well in al-Andalus, especially in Granada, given its abundance. It is believed that the name aloe itself is of Arabic origin. In al-Andalus every city of some importance had a congregational mosque or major mosque, in addition to many other smaller ones in the neighborhood. Some famous mosques were the Umayyad Mosque in Cordoba and the huge mosque of the Almohads in Seville, today both of them are Catholic cathedrals. Inside these mosques it was common to burn aromatic resins like incense or different types of aloes to scent the room and dignify the prayer in Ramadan. It is an Islamic custom to scent prayer spaces for special festivities, which survives in today's Christian churches of Andalusia. Among the Andalusian people it was very common to use perfumes, cosmetics and creams for toning up the body, curious attention to hygiene and sensory pleasures rare in the context of the European Middle Ages. It was also exceptional the custom of King Pedro I, who built one of the palaces of the Alcázar, he bathed using aromatic oils in the manner of Muslims. In some of the inscriptions in Arabic that cover walls and doors of his Alcázar of Seville, Peter is recognized not only as king but also as ‘sultan’. It is a good example of recognition and appreciation of the achievements of the preceding cultures.