Sinan’s Moldovan Military Masterpiece

It was on this day in 1489 a boy called 'Joseph' was born to a Christian family in the heart of Anatolia (Turkey). He would grow up to change the face of Europe forever, not as a Christian though, but as the greatest Muslim architect the world has ever seen. Ko'ca Mimar Sinan Aga - to give him …

Advertisements

The Christian boy who ruled the Muslim world

“Go to Mangalia, which is the Kaaba Mecca of the wandering poor people!” I had expected many things from the little Esmahan Sultan Mosque in Mangalia, south east Romania, but a comparison to Islam's holiest city was not one of them. "The Esmahan Sultan Mosque was built in 1573 ... in memory of Solyman II, one of the …

Lithuania’s Forgotten Love Minaret

If you didn't know it was there, you'd never find it. The old dirt path that crosses the railway tracks leads only to a blue tourist sign that says "50m" and points left towards what seem to be just a load of trees. There are no other clues that anything is here.  Passengers stand on the platform at …

Remembering Al-Gharb Al Andalus; Portugal’s Muslim past … and present

“I was taught nothing about Muslim Portugal in school. It was simply never mentioned.” Irina Lopes is a Lisbonian, from the city once known as Al-Ishbun, but Irina doesn't know this. “Until I spoke to you I didn't know Portugal had this amazing Islamic history. I knew nothing about it and none of my friends have …

The real European Renaissance: A photographic ode to Al-Andalus

On April 27, 711AD Tariq Ibn Ziyad, General for Caliph Al-Walid I, head of the Muslim Umayyad dynasty in Damascus, Syria, landed with his troops on a huge rock that can still be seen from the coast of Morocco today. That rock is now known as Gibraltar, a Latinisation of 'Jebel-al-Tariq' to mean the 'mount of …

5 Islamic Secrets of Europe

"Islam and Europe", don't quite fit, right? One doesn't belong in the other, apparently. "Islam and Muslims should leave Europe!" say the ignorant on both sides. Whatever your views, one thing isn't up for debate. Europe has a massive 'Islamic heritage'. In fact Islam arrived on these shores within a couple of decades of Muhammad's death, meaning …