Mosque of Ibn Tulun

Cairo, Egypt

Mosque of Ibn Tulun


The Mosque of Ibn Tulun (Arabic: مسجد إبن طولون, romanized: Masjid Ibn Ṭūlūn) is located in Cairo, Egypt. It is one of the oldest mosques in Egypt as well as the whole of Africa surviving in its full original form, and is the largest mosque in Cairo in terms of land area. It is built around an open square courtyard which allows natural light to travel through. Ibn Tulun Mosque features ancient architecture styles of Egypt, its decorations being created from carved stucco and wood. This mosque is a popular tourist attraction.

The mosque was commissioned by the Tulunid dynasty ruler Ahmad ibn Tulun, the Abbasid governor of Egypt from 868–884 whose rule was characterized by de facto independence. It was designed by the prominent Egyptian architect, Saiid Ibn Kateb Al-Farghany (Arabic: سعيد بن كاتب الفرغاني), who was an Orthodox Christian, the same engineer who designed the Nilometer. The historian al-Maqrizi lists the mosque's construction start date as 876 AD, and the mosque's original inscription slab identifies the date of completion as AH 265 (878/879).

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