| Al-Haram al-Sharif is an enormous open-air
platform of artificial construction that houses the congregational
mosque of al-Aqsa, numerous memorial buildings and fountains
and is surrounded by many madrasas. The platform was built during
Herodian times (1st century AD) to accommodate the new Jewish
Temple (that was burned shortly after its completion). The Dome
of the Rock is built approximately in the center of the Haram
on an additional platform, it is the most prominent building
in al-Haram al-Sharif both in terms of height and colors.
| The Dome of the Rock was built by the Umayyad
Caliph Abd al-Malik and completed in 691 AD. While it is the
earliest Islamic monument that has survived and one of the most
admired ones, the original purpose for its creation have been
the subject of much debate from the late Middle Ages to this
day. Its location, on the top of Mount Moriah, which is also
known as Temple Mount, associates the building with a rich tradition
of Jewish and Christian narratives.
|The Dome was built during the second Islamic
civil war, at the exact time when Dan Gibson claims Ibn Zubayr
moved the Black Rock from Metra to Mecca. If this is true, then
perhaps the Dome contains no qibla, as the qibla direction was
being contested at that very time.
| For more information visit: http://archnet.org/sites/2814