Mysterious message of the Alhambra decoded

Researchers and lovers of the Alhambra, the 14th century palace in Castile, Spain, have long puzzled and marveled at the Arabic inscriptions which cover the walls and arches of the building, wondering "What are these walls telling me?" Now Juan Castilla, from the School of Arabic Studies at Spain's Higher Scientific Research Council, has produced a video which claims to translate 3,116 of more than 10,000 inscriptions carved around the building.

"There's perhaps nowhere else in the world where gazing upon walls, columns and fountains is an exercise so similar to turning the pages of a book of poems," he says. Poetry and messages from the Koran are included in the writings, but, to the disappointment of the researchers, the same phrase, the motto of the Nazrid dynasty – "There is no victor but Allah," repeats again and again.