All the churches in that city [Cordoba] had been destroyed except the cathedral, dedicated to Saint Vincent, but the possession of this fane [church or temple] had been guaranteed by treaty. For several years the treaty was observed; but when the population of Cordova was increased by the arrival of Syrian Arabs [i.e., Muslims], the mosques did not provide sufficient accommodation for the newcomers, and the Syrians considered it would be well for them to adopt the plan which had been carried out at Damascus, Emesa [Homs], and other towns in their own country, of appropriating half of the cathedral and using it as a mosque. The [Muslim] Government having approved of the scheme, the Christians were compelled to hand over half of the edifice. This was clearly an act of spoliation, as well as an infraction of the treaty. Some years later, Abd-er Rahman I requested the Christians to sell him the other half. This they firmly refused to do, pointing out that if they did so they would not possess a single place of worship. Abd-er Rahman, however, insisted, and a bargain was struck by which the Christians ceded their cathedral.
And so the single remaining church in the city became the Great Mosque of Cordoba. This mosque became a cathedral again in 1236 when King Ferdinand III of Castile recaptured the city from Muslim Moors.
Note, however, in these following thumbnails from recent news accounts of Muslim attempts to take the cathedral back for Islam (I'm not kidding), the fudging or complete omission of the cathedral's Christian origins preceding the establishment of the Great Mosque.
From the Times of London, April 3, 2010, "Muslims arrested for trying to pray in Cordoba's former Great Mosque":
The Great Mosque of Córdoba was converted into a Christian church in 1236 after King Ferdinand III of Castile recaptured the city from the Moors. The building later became the modern-day Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption.
Muslim organisations have long campaigned for the right to pray inside the building, which was once one of the biggest mosques in the world.
However, Demetrio Fernández González, the recently appointed Bishop of Córdoba, reinforced a ban on Muslims praying in any part of the 24,000sq m (260,000sq ft) building, saying that canon law did not permit it.
A statement from the bishop’s office said: “The shared use of the cathedral by Catholics and Muslims would not contribute to the peaceful coexistence of the two beliefs.”
The Roman Catholic Church cited archaeological reports that said before the Mosque was built in the 8th century remains of an earlier Christian temple had stood on the same spot.
From HERE. Ah Spain, London, Paris. We must invent a new word for you: suigenocide.