The story of the construction of Al-Muayyad Sheikh Mosque on Al-Muizz Street

The “Al-Muayyad Sheikh” Mosque in Old Cairo, next to Bab Zuwailah on Al-Mu’izz Lidin Allah Al-Fatimi Street, in the Al-Darb Al-Ahmar area in Cairo, occupies a prominent place among the mosques of ancient Cairo. The mosque was established by Sultan Al-Muayyad Abu Al-Nasr Seif Al-Din Sheikh Al-Mahmoudi Al-Jarkasi bin Abdullah Al-Mahmoud Al-Dhaheri, famous for “ Sultan Al-Muayyad Sheikh, who ruled Egypt from 1415 to 1422, and was characterized by courage and love of knowledge. The mosque became famous for its combination of architectural value and its standing as a witness to important historical events, according to historians.

The story of the construction of Al-Muayyad Sheikh Mosque on Al-Muizz Street

Al-Muayyad Sheikh Mosque is one of the important Islamic monuments dating back to the Mamluk Circassian era. This mosque is located at the end of Al-Mu’izz Lidin Allah Al-Fatimi Street on its southern side, specifically next to Bab Zuwailah. This mosque was built by King Sultan Al-Muayyad Abu Al-Nasr, the sheikh of the Circassian origin.

who is the Sultan Al-Muayyad Sheikh?

He is one of the princes of Sultan Barquq, and Al-Maqrizi describes this mosque by saying, “It is the summation of the virtues of the structure, and the magnificence of its pillars and the magnitude of its structure is evidenced by the fact that its creator was the master of the kings of time.

King Al-Mu’ayyad sheikh of Al-Jarkasi origin, was born in 1368 AD, and was sold as a Mamluk when he was 12 years old. Then Khawaja Mahmud Shah Al-Yazdi bought him the crown of the Mamluks, so he knew Al-Mu’ayyad as Al-Mahmudi, then he was presented to Al-Zuhair Al-Barquq, who was at that time a commander of the military, so he freed him and took care of him and raised him, so Al-Mu’ayyad learned horsemanship and throwing a crossbow and spear. And sword fighting, wrestling, and horse racing.

The story of building the mosque:

This mosque has a very magnificient and beautiful building story, as it is said that in the same place as the current mosque there was a prison called the Shamail Treasury. Al-Muayyad Sheikh was imprisoned in this prison due to several accounts, including that a slander took place between him and Sultan Barquq.
When Sultan Barquq heard that Al-Muayyad Sheikh was responding to a coup against him, he ordered him to be imprisoned. This happened on a night that was full of bugs and fleas, and Al-Muayyad Sheikh suffered from this, so he prayed to God that if He saved him from this ordeal and became king of Egypt, he would demolish this prison and build a mosque in its place.

As soon as Al-Muayyad Sheikh came out of prison and his fate led him to assume the rule of Egypt, he fulfilled his vow and demolished the Shamail Treasury prison and built in its place a mosque enumerating the pearls of Islamic civilization in the Circassian Mamluk era.

The minaret of Al-Muayyad Sheikh Mosque:

In the Mosque of Al-Muayyad Sheikh at the end of Al-Mu'izz Lidin Allah Al-Fatimi Street, from the tribal side, there are two minarets installed above the towers of Bab Zuwailah. There was also a third, small minaret in the iwan facing the iwan facing the qibla, but it was demolished with the demolition of the mosque. Each of the two minarets installed above the towers of Bab Zuwailah consists of a square base measuring one-third of the size. The minaret rises and turns into an octagon through a pyramidal shape at the four corners. This octagon is decorated with curves with pointed, lobed arches. The architecture is opened in four sides, including four small openings, preceded by four balconies resting on three stations of muqarnas with pendants. They are met on the other four sides with the most brilliant designs.

The octagon is surmounted by four rows of muqarnas carrying an octagonal balcony surrounded by a stone fence with perforated geometric decorations. Above the balcony is another octagonal body with prominent decorations in the form of functions. Above the octagon is four rows of muqarnas carrying an octagonal balcony surrounded by a stone fence. Above it are eight marble columns carrying a small balcony on the sides. Rows of muqarnas, then the end of the minaret in the form of an upside-down oligo. The minarets of Al-Muayyad Mosque are among the most elegant, tall, and ornate minarets of the Mamluk era. The architect took advantage of the two towers of Bab Zuweila and placed the two minarets on top of them to give the whole group splendor and beauty.

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