What do you think of going on an interesting tour to Al-Muizz Lidin Allah Fatimid Street, and getting acquainted with one of the mosques of Fatimid Cairo, which is Al-Aqmar Mosque?
Al-Aqmar Mosque was built during the reign of the Caliph Al-Amir Bi Ahkam Allah by the vizier Abu Abdullah Muhammad Al-Batayji, nicknamed Al-Ma’mun in 519 AH, 1125 AD. The mosque was called al-Aqmar because of the white stones that resemble the color of the moon.
And for its composition, a visitor to the Al-Aqmar Mosque finds that it consists of a small square courtyard of about ten square meters, surrounded by four halls, the largest of them is the qibla hall, the “house of prayer.” And that its roof was built of shallow domes, and that the arches of its courtyard were decorated with stucco decorations and verses from Surat Al-Nur.
The most distinctive feature of the Al-Aqmar Mosque is its main facade, which is the oldest surviving stone facade. It is the first mosque to have an ornate facade with a special geometric design. It is a stone facade with radiating arches, Shiite phrases, and inscriptions in Kufic script that represent Quranic verses. The facade is decorated with the same decorations as the entrance to the mosque, which includes many elements, including: conch shapes and deaf arches on spiral columns, in addition to the shapes of vases and roses, as well as muqarnas, which are among the new architectural elements in Islamic architecture in Egypt at that time. Surprisingly, this mosque is the first Islamic mosque in Egypt designed by the Egyptian engineer in a way that its facade conforms to the street layout. Its outer side is aligned with the street, while the inner side is aligned with the direction of the qiblah.
It is noteworthy that Al-Aqmar Mosque was renovated during the reign of Sultan Barquq by Prince Yalbugha Al-Salmi, then it was renewed again in the eighteenth era by Suleiman Agha Al-Silhdar. In 1928 AD, it was renovated during the reign of King Fouad by the Committee for the Preservation of Arab Antiquities, and then by the Supreme Council of Antiquities, after the mosque was subjected to violations that resulted in the loss of the right half of its western facade.