Mosque-Madrassa of Sultan Hassan
About Mosque-Madrassa of Sultan Hassan
Located at Midan Salah ad-Din and built between 1356 and 1363 at the early part of the Mamluk era, this mosque is regarded as one of the best and most magnificent of its era. The mosque was built by Sultan Qalaun who had problems with the throne perhaps due to his young age. After coming to power at just 13 years, Qalaun was overthrown and restored at least three times before he was then assassinated before his mosque could be completely built. Also, while the mosque itself was being built, a minaret toppled and killed 300 spectators who were watching the building.
The entrance is attractive and well designed and it leads to a corridor at the end of which are four domed halls known as Iwans. Each Iwan is dedicated to each of the four major schools of Sunni Islam.
Towards the back of the Iwan located to the east, there is an outstandingly beautiful Mihrab located between columns stolen from the Crusaders. The Sultan’s mansion is accessible on the right through a bronze door.
Apart from this mosque, another equally splendid mosque, the Mosque Ar-Rifai can be found on the other side. This mosque took a whopping 43 years to complete; between 1869 and 1912. Khedive Ismail, King Farouk, and other members of modern Egyptian royalty are interned within the mosque as well as the last Shah of Iran all of whose tombs can be found to the left of the mosque’s entrance.