In 800 Caliph Harun ar-Rashid in Baghdad confirmed Ibrahim as Emir and hereditary ruler of Ifriqiya. Usually, LP is extremely reliable for hotels, but for Kairouan about everything they write is wrong. The Zaouia Sidi el Ghariani is so beautiful that it has been used many times as for signature photos for Tunisia, while the Mosque of the three doors is noted for, yes, exactly, its three doors. An article by Professor Kwesi Prah describes how during the medieval period, Kairouan was considered the fourth holiest city in Islam after Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem;[21] this tradition is said to continue into the present day. Which of the following art forms is NOT known to have flourished under the patronage of Shah Tahmasp? The Great Mosque, also known as the Sidi Oqba mosque, had its simple beginnings in 670 AD, during the time of Uqba ibn Nafi, the original founder of Kairouan. The year 909 saw the overthrow of the Sunni Aghlabites who ruled Ifriqiya and the establishment of the Fatimid dynasty. Community Guidelines. It is really made to remove dust from the water before it came to the hole. In 2014, the city had about 187,000 inhabitants. Pyxis of al-Mughira. But in fact, it is a question of 4 wellheads, looking like the base of Roman columns, a drain and a minbar-like sundial. Sign up. Other than its monuments, Kairouan is also known for its fantastic food. In that period Imam Sahnun and Asad ibn al-Furat made of Kairouan a temple of knowledge and a magnificent centre of diffusion of Islamic sciences. [31] The small minaret was added during the restoration works held under the Hafsid dynasty. The Great Mosque of Cordoba. Although we did not go into the mosque it was still a lovely place to see. Unfortunately, the entire inner structure is off-limits for non-Muslims, and the doors are closed for even a small peek inside. In 745, Kharijite Berbers captured Kairouan, which was already at that time a developed city with luxuriant gardens and olive groves. Impressive building. The tomb inside is suprisingly not the one of Sidi el Ghariani, but the 16th century Hafsid sultan Moulay Hassan. It is clear that the use of lights are quite deliberate to make surroundings attractive. after the glorious days of Carthage. No problems. Many shopkeepers will accept to be paid by VISA or MasterCard, provided that you buy above 10-15 dinars. The Mosque of the Three Gates was founded in 866. Mahdia…. Still, the columns of the prayer hall are even older, having been taken from Roman and Byzantine structures in Carthage and Hadrumetum (Sousse). Similar to the hotel situation, Kairouan offers most standards, and everything at friendly prices. The impressive 19th century allows limited views, but you will be able to see the mihrab, which is noted for being framed by 130 faience tiles imported from Baghdad in the 9th century. If you’re ever visiting, make sure to taste the following: Kafteji. Kairouan, the capital of Kairouan Governorate, lies south of Sousse, 50 km (31 mi) from the east coast, 75 km (47 mi) from Monastir and 184 km (114 mi) from Tunis. You'll find yourself in an expansive space with an arched colonnade running all … Kairouan has a hot semi-arid climate (Köppen climate classification BSh). The columns were of Roman and Byzantine origin, and brough here from as far away as Carthage and Hadrumetum (Sousse). Charming 3 star Hotel Splendid, which has nice, friendly rooms at a reasonable price. The other story, is the most popular, says that Oqba found a golden cup gold he had lost in the Zamzam well in Mecca. Boujaffar Beach It's lined with resort hotels, but everyone's welcome on … If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. The early mosques are believed to be inspired by Muhammad’s home in Medina, which was the first mosque. Also known as "Sidi Ukba" mosque. Its façade is a notable example of Islamic architecture. It is also called Mosque of the Barber, as he was known for always carrying with him 3 hairs of Muhammad. Its Great Mosque … The Great Mosque of Kairouan was a public structure, set along roads that served a city with a vibrant commercial, educational, and religious life. We walked within the walls of the Medina (old town) exploring its beautiful small allies and many mosques. Amor Abbada was a strange kind of blacksmith philosopher, creating oversized objects full of inscriptions explaining their purpose. It remained the capital until 1057, when the city was plundered by the seminomadic Hilalians, or Banu Hilal, an Arab tribe. In the courtyard there are a number of objects which seems like they were randomly placed there during an excavation or something. [28] The Great Mosque of Sidi-Uqba has a great historical importance as the ancestor of all the mosques in the western Islamic world.[29]. Things were much cleaner before the tourist centre was opened. Email. 3 Creswell, K.A.C. The Mosque of Uqba also known as the Great Mosque of Kairouan, is an early example of a hypostyle mosque that also reflects how pre-Islamic and eastern Islamic art and motifs were incorporated into the religious It consists of 3 sections, where the first is 19 metres, the second 5 metres and the third 7.5 metres including the dome. The Great Mosque of Kairouan. A blindfolded camel is pulling the wheel, and the water that flushes out of the mugs you see on the picture is free to drink for anyone, Muslim or non-Muslim. It is quite a strange structure, you really never get a realistic impression of its dimensions. You will not have have to go far off the area to find yourself in tranquil residential streets. – The Great Mosque of Kairouan, Tunisia: One of the earliest mosques and part of the UNESCO heritage, the Great Mosque of Kairouan was constructed in 670 AD. Its present configuration is the sum of building and decorating activities carried out from the 8th through the 20th centuries. This zawiyya is claimed to house the tomb of one of the prophet’s companions, a sahab, named Abu Zama al-Belaoui. In its present state, the monument dates from the 17th century.[32]. (1936) `The Jami Mosque of Quairawan”, Almaaref, Cairo, pp.12-26. The construction is a 9th century achievement, and was used as exactly what it looks like, a water reservoir. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. There are 414 marble, granite and porphyry columns in the mosque. A city grew quickly up, and around 800, Kairouan became the capital of the Aghlabid dynasty. The second photo shows one of two Roman bricks with inscriptions. Note what looks like useless decorations around the hole. It soon became famous for its wealth and prosperity, reaching the levels of Basra and Kufa and giving Tunisia one of its golden ages long sought[by whom?] According to scholars, the minaret was not part of the architecture of mosques during the early Islamic period. From Kairouan envoys from Charlemagne and the Holy Roman Empire returned with glowing reports of the Aghlabites palaces, libraries and gardens – and from the crippling taxation imposed to pay for their drunkenness and sundry debaucheries. [22], In memory of Sufi saints, Sufi festivals are held in the city. From atop you really see that the first impression of the mosque as a fortress is not accidental. And it is easy to fit into you schedule too. Thus the mosque, headquarters of a prestigious university with a large library containing many scientific and theological works, was the most remarkable intellectual and cultural center in North Africa during the ninth, tenth and eleventh centuries. Kairouan was used as a filming location for the 1981 film Raiders of the Lost Ark, standing in for Cairo. Mimar Sinan, Mosque of Selim II, Edirne. This stipulation gave a woman legal recourse in the case that her husband sought to take a second wife. By the way, the number of columns is 414. Visit the Great Mosque: non-Muslims are allowed to enter the courtyard and to observe the prayer hall, a majestic forest of arches and ancient columns. Kairouan can get very hot during summer, and visitors to the city at this season should take necessary precautions. In the 11 th century, Kairouan was sacked by rival factions and thus spiraled towards its decline. The city was for a long time characterized by not being much touched by the French, who wanted to respect the sentiment of the Tunisians. Plenty of eateries to choose from. [33] The sepulchre place is accessed from a cloister-like court with richly decorated ceramics and stuccoes. Kairouan (Arabic: القيروان‎ Qeirwān), also spelled Al Qayrawān (listen) or Kairwan, is the capital of the Kairouan Governorate in Tunisia. 2 Fikri, A. The transmission of knowledge was assured by prominent scholars and theologians which included Sahnun ibn Sa'id and Asad ibn al-Furat, eminent jurists who contributed greatly to the dissemination of the Maliki thought, Ishaq ibn Imran and Ibn al-Jazzar in medicine, Abu Sahl al-Kairouani and Abd al-Monim al-Kindi in mathematics. It looks like a fortress from the outside, but its inside features the hypostyle style courtyard planning. It contains a number of courtyards, a madrasa, a mosque and a funduq (for pilgrims. [12], In 893, through the mission of Abdullah al Mahdi, the Kutama Berbers from the west of the country started the movement of the Shiite Fatimids. But there is more to the story: In 670, the general of the invading Arab forces, Oqba bin Nafi, found a golden cup in the sands here, a golden cup that he had lost in the holy well of Zamzam in Mecca a few years earlier. Almost all were taken from the ruins of Carthage. [citation needed], Europa Publications "General Survey: Holy Places", "Location and origin of the name of Kairouan", "Les normales climatiques en Tunisie entre 1981 2010", "Réseau des stations météorologiques synoptiques de la Tunisie", Centre for Advanced Study of African Societies, "Tunisia News – Sufi Song Festival starts in Kairouan", "Monogamy in Islam: The Case of a Tunisian Marriage Contract", "Great Mosque of Kairouan (Qantara mediterranean heritage)", Mausoleum of Sidi Sahbi (Qantara Mediterranean heritage), Panoramic virtual tour of Kairouan medina, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Kairouan&oldid=995043696, Populated places established in the 7th century, 7th-century establishments in the Umayyad Caliphate, Articles with dead external links from December 2017, Articles with permanently dead external links, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles containing Persian-language text, Articles with unsourced statements from June 2019, Articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases from August 2014, Articles with unsourced statements from March 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from May 2017, Articles with unsourced statements from September 2017, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz area identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WorldCat-VIAF identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Source 1: Institut National de la Météorologie (precipitation days/humidity/sun 1961–1990, extremes 1951–2017), Mosque of Ansar (traditionally dating to 667, but totally renewed in 1650), This page was last edited on 18 December 2020, at 22:41. The most sacred is the grave of Sidi Sahab, which cannot be entered by non-Muslims. The whitewashed graves stand in front of the city walls with the minaret of the Great Mosque above. Most of the time it is closed for entry, but if you’ lucky you may be able to climb its 128 steps to the top. . Moreover, the Mosque of the Three Doors, built in 866 AD, is the oldest known Islamic mosque with a sculpted facade. Note here the Roman columns used as the only form of decoration. The history of Kairouan’s city walls date back to 761, but have been destroyed and rebuilt numerous times. Standing inside the mosque’s courtyard, you will probably not be able to see that everything tilts, none of the corners are 90 degrees and the minaret does not stand on the axis running from the mihrab through the entrance to the prayer hall, rather about 8 metres to the right. The Alhambra. HISTORY The great mosque of Kairouan was built under the provinces of Ifriqiya, which the Arab annexed in AD 670, at which time they founded the city of Kairouan. The city was founded by the Umayyads around 670. Like swords that should protect but not kill and candles of wisdom, keys that only God can turn (photo left). Kairouan is about 160 kilometres south of Tunis and was founded by the Arabs in around 670 AD. The Great Mosque of Kairouan dates back to 670 CE and was built by the command of Arab Muslim general Oqba bin Nafi. You can make out the door to one of those on this photo. Woodwork details can be quite excellent many places, too, but in general it is the simplicity that really makes Kairouan so nice. Forget all that, though, and try to get a touch of the history behind the pools. Looking further up the minaret can usually only be done with your camera zoom or with binoculars. The largest pool is 128 in diametre and 5 metres deep. Around 690, shortly after its construction, the mosque was destroyed during the occupation of Kairouan by the Berbers, originally conducted by Kusaila. From the outside it really looks huge, from the inside you will start looking for that large room or courtyard, but all you find are small rooms and courtyards. Subsequently, there occurred a mass conversion of the Berbers to Islam. Diagrams. Judging by its name, many visitors to Kairouan wonder if the place is named after Cairo of Egypt. The first mosques erected in early Muslim time did not have minarets – the believers were called to prayer by the muezzin standing on the mosque roof. The zawiyya of Sidi el Ghariani is a beautiful little structure, where you can take a closer look at 14th century woodcarving and stuccowork. Djenné, once a thriving town in Mali, is known for its Great Mosque, Sudanese-style mud-brick architecture. During this period, the Great Mosque of Kairouan was both a place of prayer and a center for teaching Islamic sciences under the Maliki current. The outer walls and the gates to the mosque is not to be missed. This is said to be source of the Bi’ Barouta, Kairouan’ most popular attraction among Muslims. It is 31.5 metres high with a base of 10.7 metres square. [24], In addition to studies on the deepening of religious thought and Maliki jurisprudence, the mosque also hosted various courses in secular subjects such as mathematics, astronomy, medicine and botany. There is a second sundial on the eastern colonnade, which was used in afternoons. The lower photo shows his burial place. The Great Mosque of Kairouan also known as the Mosque of Uqba (Great Mosque of Sidi-Uqba) The most important mosque in the city is the Great Mosque of Sidi-Uqba (Uqba ibn nafée) also known as the Great Mosque of Kairouan. The prayer hall has a nave and two aisles, divided by arched columns, parallel to the qibla wall. When the Zirids declared their independence from Cairo and their conversion to Sunni Islam in 1045 by giving allegiance to Baghdad, the Fatimid Caliph Ma'ad al-Mustansir Billah sent as punishment hordes of troublesome Arab tribes (Banu Hilal and Banu Sulaym) to invade Ifriqiya. Moreover, “” is a bad transliteration from the Arabic name “”, while Kairouan is a fairly correct transliteration of the Arabic “”. The mosque dates back to the 9th century, a period from which there is little else in Kairouan. Honor Code. The Great Mosque of Kairouan; Search. It was founded by Kairoun al-Maafri, a holy man of Cordoba. Even today, the local religious traditions says that a Muslim drinking water from Bi’r Baruta a number of times is exempted from performing the pilgrimage to Mecca, a journey both long and expensive. The author published this book based on his study of the Mosque between 1931-1934 and 1936. The Great Mosque of Kairouan (in Tunisia) is one of the best preserved and most significant examples of early great mosques. [citation needed], Jews were among the original settlers of Kairouan, and the community played an important role in Jewish history, having been a world center of Talmudic and Halakhic scholarship for at least three generations.[13]. The mosque stands on the site of a 1st-century Hellenic temple to Jupiter and of a later church of St. John the Baptist. Mobile. He also claimed that two anchors which he gave his home town had come from Noah’s Ark on Mount Ararat, anchors which were said to fasten Kairouan to the earth. Banks, ATMs and exchange service in the receptions in the better hotels. It is certainly something else, with its Jerba-like minaret-on-a-dome finish. Notes and References: 1 The French spells it with “k” and without “w” as follows: Kairouan. Although it has been destroyed a couple of times, then rebuilt, today’ structure rests much upon the original mosque. There are two reasons for this: from up here it is possible to get good views and photos, and you don’ get to see how filthy the pools have become. There are occasionally small kiosks built into the wall structure, often used as shops. Quizlet Learn. The Great Mosque of Kairouan, also known as the Mosque of Uqba, is one of the most important mosques in Tunisia, situated in the UNESCO World Heritage town of Kairouan. This mosque is noted for its three doors, a rather uncommon facade for a small mosque integrated in the street structure. The decorations around the door do not even fit, intriguing. In from the city walls, few buildings lean on the walls. Thank YavuzM_13 . The Great Mosque of Kairouan dates back to 670 CE and was built by the command of Arab Muslim general Oqba bin Nafi. And the Menema comes “highly recommended!”, despite being dull, overpriced and with a bad location. These invaders so utterly destroyed Kairouan in 1057 that it never regained its former importance and their influx was a major factor in the spread of nomadism in areas where agriculture had previously been dominant. None two are said to have the same shape and size. The Aghlabite also pacified the country and conquered Sicily in 827. This would last a little bit more than a century, before the Fatimids made Mahdia their capital. But at least here my camera’s (not-so-) wide angle managed get it all into one photo. [7][8][9] In Berber, the city used to be called Tikirwan تيكيروان,[10] thought to be an adaptation of the Arabic name. Today’s discontinuing walls are far from as old as they seem, many parts were rebuilt as late as after World War 2. Most seem to agree that the lowest storey of the minaret in Kairouan are the remains of the first real minaret in the world, dating back to 730, more than 100 years after the death of the Prophet Muhammad. Old places like the shopping streets of Kairouan have been designed much to serve the needs of its inhabitants in the late afternoon and evening hours, that is the time when temperatures fall to a pleasant level. Kairouan, one of the most celebrated cities of the Islamic world, captivates visitors with the unique charm of its medina. [citation needed] As the film is set in 1936, television antennas throughout the city were taken down for the duration of filming. It is only under the Husainid Dynasty that Kairouan started to find an honorable place in the country and throughout the Islamic world. Lalla Rihana Gate is one of the newest additions to the mosque, dating from 1294, built after Hafsid designs, with its arches and cupola. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. It is known as the most important mosque in Kairouan . Not uncommon, but the tablet with Koranic and non-Koranic inscriptions is different from what I have usually seen. I highly recommend an evening stroll along the walls, when headlights create an effect equal to the best Oriental images of the Muslim city. [20] After its establishment, Kairouan became an Islamic and Qur'anic learning centre in North Africa. The new Emirs embellished Kairouan and made it their capital. The foundation of Kairouan dates to about the year 670 when the Arab general Uqba ibn Nafi of Caliph Mu'awiya selected a site in the middle of a dense forest, then infested with wild beasts and reptiles, as the location of a military post for the conquest of the West. They come out calling Hotel Splendid run down and with a “surly staff”. The mosque, as it stands today, was built by the Aghlabid governor of Kairouan, Ziyadat Allah, between 817 and 838. [1] In the period of Caliph Mu'awiya (reigned 661–680), it became an important centre for Sunni Islamic scholarship and Quranic learning,[2] and thus attracting many Muslims from various parts of the world, next only to Mecca and Medina. One of the legends on the prayer hall of the Great Mosque says that anyone trying to count its columns will become blind. The holy town is named for the different sacred places it contains. Everything from basic to 4 star. Ask YavuzM_13 about The Great Mosque of Kairouan. Its role can be compared to that of the University of Paris in the Middle Ages. The caretaker, Khammeri, is very enthusiastic and helpful. A wooden cage protects the spot where he was placed to rest in the ground. In some of the better hotels, you’ll find bars, but these places can be dull and half empty. Although it has been destroyed a couple of times, then rebuilt, today’ structure rests much upon the original mosque. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Kairouan is defined as the holiest city of Tunisia, being the oldest Islamic settlement, having the oldest mosque in North Africa and the world’s oldest minaret. The Great Mosque of Kairouan (Arabic: جامع القيروان الأكبر ‎), also known as the Mosque of Uqba (جامع عقبة بن نافع), is a mosque situated in the UNESCO World Heritage town of Kairouan, Tunisia and is one of the most impressive and largest Islamic monuments in North Africa.. Which is totally wrong! The Great Mosque of Kairouan (in Tunisia) is considered as the ancestor of all the mosques in the western Islamic world. The answer is no. Visitors can also climb the minaret, inspired by the lighthouse of Alexandria. zlebia and makroudh). Tunisia has long been known as a draw for its wonderful Mediterranean coastline. The best wall parts are around the Bab Chouhada, which also serves as the main entrance to the most popular areas of the medina. With the wide yard in the middle, this mosque is worth to visit. Water came from the hills 35 km west of Kairouan, delivered here by aqueduct. In 1881, Kairouan was taken by the French, after which non-Muslims were allowed access to the city. "[25], The city's main attraction is the Great Mosque of Sidi-Uqba, which is said to largely consist of its original building materials. Along the route between the shopping quarters and the Great Mosque, there are some important religious buildings. Date of experience: December 2018. It is this well that has elevated Kairouan into its prominent position in the heart of devout Muslims in this part of northern Africa. Beaches. The entire structure reflects the position of the mosque in the early Muslim conquest of North Africa, a time when no stable state had yet been established and the mosque had to double as a fortress. On the photo to the left, you see the original mausoleum, dating back to the 7th century. Flashcards. Kairouan Home to the imposing Great Mosque, whose foundations date to the earliest years of Islam. It has been speculated that the use of the same word in Arabic for a lighthouse and a mosque’s tower is due to the resemblance of one to the other. Schools and universities flourished, overseas trade in local manufactures and farm produce ran high and the courts of the Zirids rulers were centres of refinement that eclipsed those of their European contemporaries. Governing again from Kairouan, the Zirids led the country through another artistic, commercial and agricultural heyday. Ibrahim ibn al-Aghlab founded the Aghlabid dynasty which ruled Ifriqiya between 800 and 909. Great Mosque of Damascus, the earliest surviving stone mosque, built between 705 and 715 CE by the Umayyad Caliph al-Walid I. With its simplicity, the detail of the Great Mosque becomes quite effective. The eastern-most pools, which are the least attractive and also considerably smaller. Power struggles continued until Ibrahim ibn al-Aghlab recaptured Kairouan at the end of the 8th century. The present layout was created in the 9th century, but it is hard to establish which parts date back to this date. From below, note how the window niches get larger as further to the top. The Islamic mosque has historically been both a place of prayer and a community meeting space. Kairouan during the last shopping hours of the day can be quite attractive. The Great Mosque is a universal architectural masterpiece. The base of the minaretis though to be some 100 years older than this. Simple and beautiful. Kairouan is regarded as a very holy city by Muslims and the Sidi Oqba Mosque is the first mosque built in Africa and is regarded as being the fourth most important mosque in Islam after the great mosques in Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem. The oldest surviving parts date back to the 18th century, as do the oldest gate. [27] Founded by Arab general Uqba Ibn Nafi in 670 CE, the present aspect of the mosque dates from the 9th century. Look out for the many religious buildings, most can easily be located by their domes. Kairouan is known for its pastries (e.g. Help. Book making b. Tilework ... Quizlet Live. [26] The Great Mosque of Kairouan (Great Mosque of Sidi-Uqba) is considered as one of the most important monuments of Islamic civilization as well as a worldwide architectural masterpiece. Drain in the middle of the courtyard, used to collect rainwater which was preserved in underground cisterns. Shopping in Kairouan resembles many other tourist places, but there is a selection of locally produced items for sale too. The most noteworthy are carpets, sold from many different shops. [citation needed], A unique religious tradition in Kairouan was the use of Islamic law to enforce monogamy by stipulating it in the marriage contract, a practice common among both elites and commoners. New colours appear, lights are sometimes coloured and shadows dramatic. This was considered a proof that there was a underground river between Mecca and Kairouan, making the water of Bi’ Barouta holy. A mandatory stop during a trip to Tunisia and a starting point to discover the impressive ancient … Otherwise known as Sidi Oqba Mosque, the Great Mosque of Kairouan is an imposing structure, featuring typically simple Aghlabid design. Although the introduction of the 1956 Code of Personal Status rendered the tradition obsolete by outlawing polygamy nationwide, some scholars have identified it as a "positive tradition for women within the large framework of Islamic law. But it is believed that with the expansion of Islam, the many churches with their towers paved the ground for adding towers to minarets as well. [30] It has three arched doorways surmounted by three inscriptions in Kufic script, interspersed with floral and geometrical reliefs and topped by a carved frieze; the first inscription includes the verses 70–71 in the sura 33 of Quran. The Great Mosque of Kairouan was a public structure, set along roads that served a city with a vibrant commercial, educational, and religious life. There are today two ways of visiting the Aghlabid pools, either by the tourist centre or the western gate leading into the park. How things change, Bizerte once considered the sleepy town to the North the fifth largest, but…, Funny thing perception. The name (ٱلْقَيْرُوَان Al-Qairuwân) is an Arabic word meaning "military group" or "caravan",[5] borrowed early on from the Middle Persian word kārawān[6] (modern Persian کاروان kârvân), meaning "military column" (kâr people/military + vân outpost) or "caravan" (see caravanserai). The Aghlabites built the great mosque and established in it a university that was a centre of education both in Islamic thought and in the secular sciences. It must have been with great awe that the Muslims of the early centuries of North African Islam entered this vast hall, some 70 times 40 metres. In the 9th century, the city became a brilliant focus of Arab and Islamic cultures attracting scholars from all over the Islamic World. Known locally as Mezquita-Catedral, the Great Mosque of Cordoba is one of the oldest structures still standing from the time Muslims ruled Al-Andalus (Muslim Iberia including most of Spain, Portugal, and a small section of Southern France) in the late eighth century. The rest of the complex is far much younger, built a 1000 years later. a. Shopping quarters of Kairouan are really just centred to the Avenue 7 Novembre and adjacent streets. Further on are the eastern walls of the courtyard. The holy Mosque of Uqba is situated in the city.[3][4]. The two top photos show how it at first was built with bits and pieces from older structures. Amor Abbada was not always philosophical in a way that can appeal to modern people. In addition to the Great Mosque there are a number of smaller, still very interesting and attractive, religious institutions open to non-Muslims too. 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