воскресенье, 16 декабря 2012 г.

12. Maqams that were Judaized

Maqam Abu Huraira (Tomb of rabban Gamaliel)
مقام أبو هريرة
קבר רבן גמליאל

C. Clermont-Ganneau described this monument so: “At Yebna we pitched our tent near the wely of Abu Horeira. Inside this we noticed numerous fragments of marble, several stones with the medieval tool-marking, and two marble columns surmounted by their capitals. The outside of the building is rather a picturesque sight, with its lewain of three arches, its cupolas and its courtyard planted with fine trees. The consecration of the Sanctuary to the famous Abu Horeira, "the father of the little she cat," the companion of Mohammed, though it can be and has been disputed, and is certainly spurious, must date very far back” (ARP II 167–168).


Photo of 1930s


Marble columns with Corinthian capitals can still be seen today. Though the tomb of Abu Huraira has been here since long ago, the existing mausoleum was built in 1293 in a purely Mamluk style and for centuries was the main religious building in Yavne. It consists of two rooms: the front room and the burial chamber, where in front of the mihrab a cenotaph used to stand. Above this room towers the central dome resting on an octagonal drum. Entrance to the burial chamber is decorated with Arabic inscriptions preserved to the present day. One of the inscriptions says – in honor of the Mamluk sultan Baybars.


V. Guérin in 1863 found a Muslim cemetery in the yard in front of the mausoleum (Judee II, 57). C. Conder in 1875 saw a minaret located in the north-west corner of the mausoleum (SWP II, 442): The illustrations in the book by C. Clermont-Ganneau and photographs of the early 19th century show that minaret is no longer there.


After 1948 the mausoleum was privatized by Sephardic Jews, who rebuilt the Muslim shrine and turned it into a tomb of rabban Gamaliel II. The Muslim cemetery was liquidated and the wall around it was demolished. Instead of a cenotaph of Abu Huraira a gravestone in honor of Gamaliel was set; and a burial chamber was divided into two parts (one for men, another for women) by a partition.


Visited: 06.08.12
Coordinates: 31°52'03.9"N 34°44'33.5"E
Location of the object on Google Maps



Tomb of Simeon, the son of Jacob
مقام النبي شمعون
קבר שמעון בן יעקב

Muslims know this maqam as the tomb of the prophet Sheman (nabi Sheman). V. Guérin calls it nabi Chema'oun (Samaria II, 356). Jews were correct to identify him with their patriarch Simeon, the son of Jacob, though traditionally it was thought that patriarch Simeon was buried in Hebron. Until 2004 the building stayed in a derelict state but then the Jews decided to appropriate it. For a while there was a struggle for the shrine between Jews and Israeli Arabs: under cover of darkness the dome of the tomb alternately stained then blue, then green. Read about it in the Arabic article “Battle of colors”.

Photo of 2010

пятница, 14 декабря 2012 г.

13. Not maqams

Al-Qasr. Structure at Height 367

To the south of Beit Jimal Monastery at a Height 367 stands a curious circular building with a dome, which from a distance looks like a maqam. Arabs called this building al-Qasr. But this is not a Muslim shrine, but some kind of fortification that may be connected somehow with the Monastery. It has two entrances – on the north and on the west. A round wall has four little loopholes which narrow closer to the front side. There is speculation that this building was used by Israeli forces in 1948. The loopholes look east and south of the Beit Jimal Monastery, the direction from which attacks of the Arab Legion were expected.




View from the north

14a. Abandoned Mosques. South

Mosque of Abu l-‘Awn
مسجد أبو العون
מסגד אבו אל-עון

On Google Maps this structure is called “Maqam Abu Liyun”, although it was never a tomb. Arab residents of the village Jaljulia (a structure is located on the territory of the village cemetery) do not think it is maqam. It is an abandoned, or rather laid up, mosque. Metal structures and wooden props hold together and support the building, preventing it from falling apart.

The mosque had two vaulted rooms, but only the eastern one survived; the western room, which was higher, with a large dome (Petersen 2001, 176), was destroyed by the fire of British artillery during the World War I. Now the only memory left of this room is the remains of the arches. The mihrab in the eastern room survived, but it is difficult to see it because of the wooden props.

View from the west

The plan of the mosque and the mihrab (from the book by A. Petersen)

View from the south

According to one of the hypothesis, the name “Abu l-‘Awn” originates from the spiritual leader of the 15–16th centuries named Shams ad-Din Abu l-‘Awn Muhammad al-Ghazi, who also built a mosque Sidna Ali near Arsuf. According to another hypothesis, the mosque is named after a certain commander Salah ad-Din (Saladin). At least the appearance of the mosque matches the architecture of 15–16th centuries.

15. Sacred Springs and Sabils

Bir Ayub (‘Ein Rogel)
بير أيوب
עין רוגל

In 985 the Arab writer and traveller al-Muqaddasi wrote: “The village of Sulwan is a place on the outskirts of the city [Jerusalem]. Below the village of ‘Ain Sulwan (the Pool of Siloam), of fairly good water, which irrigates the large gardens which were given in bequest by the Khalif ‘Othman ibn ‘Affan for the poor of the city. Lower down than this, again, is Job's Well (Bir Ayub)”.

A Muslim legend has it that the pious Job bathed in this spring and got rid of his leprosy. C. Conder said that Bir Ayub was located in the southern part of Silwan, in Wady Ayub (SWP III 54). Ch. Clermont-Ganneau retold the legend about this spring, and reported that, according to fellahs, the water from this spring is sweet, in contrast to the saltish water in Sitt Maryam spring (Gihon Spring) (ARP I 300-301). Israelis identify Bir Ayub with the biblical ‘Ein Rogel

Picture by D. Roberts (1839)

Picture of 1859

Picture from the book by J. Sepp (1863)