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Friday prayers were held at the al-Tunbagha al-Mardani mosque in the al-Darb al-Ahmar neighbourhood of Cairo for the first time since 2018 after restoration work as completed.

"The most important damages that were present in the mosque were among the elements that distinguish it, such as mosaics, most of which could have fell. They were re-installed and installed according to internationally recognized archaeological and artistic norms. The niche and pulpit were restored and most of the fillings that were missing were returned," the restoration supervisor, Karam Elbadry Ahmed, explained.

Historically, the mosque dates back to the Mamluk era. It was established by a prince known as al-Tanbagha al-Mardani, one of the mamluks of Sultan al-Nasir Muhammad bin Qalawun who ruled Egypt in the late 13th and early 14th centuries.

The mosque, which is nearly 700 years old, was last restored in 1898.

SOUNDBITES:

SOT, Karam El-badry Ahmed, Restoration supervisor (Arabic): "The most important damages that were present in the mosque were among the elements that distinguish it, such as mosaics, most of which could have fell. They were re-installed and installed according to internationally recognized archaeological and artistic norms. The niche and pulpit were restored and most of the fillings that were missing were returned."

SOT, Karam El-badry Ahmed, Restoration supervisor (Arabic): "The niche is one of the most important and greatest niches in mosques and Islamic architecture due to the decoration it contains, which includes marble mosaics. Most of those mosaics had fallen off and some were in a state of damage."

SOT, Eslam Yossef, Inspector of Antiquities at General Administration of South Cairo (Arabic): "The architectural diversity (in the mosque) is represented in the architecture that preceded the Islamic architecture. Some stones were imported from them, and those stones are represented in columns with a base, a body and the crown of the column."

SOT, Eslam Yossef, Inspector of Antiquities at General Administration of South Cairo (Arabic): "Some ask whether this rule was present with the same design in the Pharaonic architecture? Of course not, it did not exist with the same design, the Muslim architect brought it, formed it and painted it with gold and made it an excellent base comparable to the bases found in the columns of the Al-Tunbagha Al-Mardani mosque".

#Cairo #Egypt

Video ID: 20211002-010

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