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Cairo



Cairo
Introduction

1. Modern Cairo

2. The National Museum

3. al-Azhar Mosque

4. Old Cairo

5. Hanging church

6. Coptic museum

7. Coptic churches

8. The synagogue

9. Fustat

10. Mosque of Amr

11. Ibn Tulun Mosque

12. Khan el-Khalili

13. The Citadel

14. Muhammad Ali Mosque

15. Sultan al-Nasir Mosque

16. Suleyman Pasha Mosque

17. The bloody museums

18. Panorama of Cairo

Practicalities

more on
CAIRO


Intro



Modern Cairo

National Museum

al-Azhar mosque


Old Cairo

Hanging church

Coptic museum

The churches

The synagogue

Fustat

Mosque of Amr

Ibn Tulun Mosque

Khan el-Khalili


The Citadel

Map

Practicalties




















Open LookLex Encyclopaedia



Open the online Arabic language course







OLD CAIRO
Mosque of Amr


Cairo, Egypt

The floor is covered by carpets with a mihrab motive.

Cairo, Egypt

The Mosque of Amr is the oldest of Egypt, first constructed in 641, following what general Amr Ibni l-As thought was a sign from God: At this spot a dove nested in his tent.
But the reason why the Mosque of Amr is not on the itinerary of most tourists coming to Cairo, is that nothing of the present structure is original. The oldest parts date back to 827, but most are fairly recent structures. But one detail gives away the mosque's age: It lies lower than the surrounding quarters. These have been built over and over again, always using the rubble from demolished houses as foundation.
The mosque is huge, its exterior quite different from many other mosques. It is simple, but from some angles quite beautiful. The front minaret is notably small for a mosque with room for perhaps 10,000 believers at the same time. From this you can read something about the history of minarets: the earliest mosques did not have minarets, and when they were introduced (about the time of construction for this one), they hardly rose above the roof the mosque proper.
Cairo, Egypt

The back of the mosque. Note the extra minaret facing towards one of Cairo's few empty quarters, as well as the meeting point between the concrete reinforcement of the 1970's and the old facade.




By Tore Kjeilen