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14 November 2009
26 Thu AlQe'da 1430

A Journey in Tripoli

Tripoli > History > Tourist Guides > A Journey in Tripoli AlFayhaa > The Thirteenth Historical Complex


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The Thirteenth Historical Complex
Ribat alKhayl Alley.

The Khankah.

The Muallaq Mosque.

Inner view from the Jadeed (New) Bath.
Plan of the thirteenth historical complex

The third branch of the "Ouwaynat" ascent, that points to the south, will lead you to the thirteenth historical complex. On the left side is the "Ribat alKhayl" alley, on top of which there are inscriptions and military windows for arrow-shooting.

On the right side of the "Ribat aalKhayl" alley is the "Khankah", a monument characterized by its Mameluke portal. Around the "Khankah," there are rooms inhabited by widows and on the southern side, there is a prayer house and a room that embraces the virtuous lady who commissioned this unique building in Lebanon.

If you go down from the "Khankah" for one minute towards the west, you'll find the Ottoman "Mu'allaq" mosque on the right side. This mosque was commissioned by "Mahmoud Lutfi alZa'im" in 1556 CE and is also built on top of a road above an array of shops. Near it, there is the tomb of its commissioner "alZa'im."

Facing the road, below the mosque, is the "hammam alJadeed" that was built by the Ottoman Governor of Tripoli "Ibrahim Pasha elAzem" (1721-1730 CE). It is one of the most beautiful and stately hammams, its portal is decorated by a stony-chain with intersecting rings, sculpted using a single large stone. In the southern wall of the hammam, there is a Mameluke fountain known as "Sabeel alTeenah" and was commissioned by Prince "Mohammed ben Markeshah alA'alani" in 1414 CE. Inside the hammam, there is a historical plaque.

On the way to the hammam and the fountain you will, in two minutes, pass by one of the most famous and largest public cafes in Tripoli, that is "Mak'ha Mousa." Halfway, it becomes necessary to have a break at the best Oriental sweets shop of Tripoli specialized in making "Halawat alJobn" (cheese sweet). This type of Oriental sweets is the best known in Tripoli and visitors from Lebanon and Syria come especially to Tripoli to taste it. Recently, international orders for these Oriental sweets via express mail are offered by many shops. "Halawat alJobn" is eaten along with lemon flower jam, rose and flower water. It is one of the most meaningful gifts that may be bought from Tripoli.

Mousa Cafe.


The Fourteenth Historical Complex
The gate of the second hall of Taynal mosque.

A view inside Taynal Mosque.

Taynal mosque.
Plan of the fourteenth historical complex

On the western side from "Mak'ha Mousa" is the most beautiful and magnificent mosque of Tripoli and Lebanon ever, that is the "Taynal" mosque. This mosque alone composes the fourteenth historical complex and can be reached after only a three-minute walk. On both sides of the road leading to the mosque is the major Islamic cemetery, known as "Bab alRamel." The "Taynal" mosque is a Mameluke construction commissioned by Prince "Sayfuddeen Taynal alAshrafi alHajeb" in 1336 CE. The internal portal emulates the most elaborate gates of Mameluke Cairo and Damascus. "Taynal" mosque is composed of two prayer houses and includes the most beautiful marble portal ever in the region. It is a magnificent art masterpiece that includes beautifully colored inscriptions and engravings. The first prayer hall contains unique Mameluke columns that are made up of Pharaonic Egyptian granite pillars and Corinthian Byzantine crowns, carrying Mameluke sandy domes. In the inner (second) prayer house, you can see the sanctuary and the wooden minbar (pulpit) made by the master "Mohammed alSafadi" in 1336 CE. The "Taynal" mosque is characterized by its minaret that resembles the "citadel" piece of the chess game with opposing double helical stairways. The minaret has two doors, one outside and the other inside the mosque, that lead to non-intersecting double helical stairways. Nearby the mosque on the right side, are four rooms used historically by the judges of the city who follow the four Islamic orders: Hanafi, Shafi'i, Maliki, and Hanbali.

From the "Taynal" mosque you can see the modern "Siddeeq" mosque, characterized by its tall rocket-shaped minaret. It was designed by an architect from Tripoli in 1960 CE, who was inspired by the shapes of space rockets utilized during that time.

AlSiddeeq Mosque.

Useful Suggestions
Faces from Tripoli.

Faces from Tripoli.

Mashrabiyah window at AlIskandari House adjacent to the Mansouri Great Mosque.

Traditional gate.
Mameluke decorative motifs.

  • If you were in a hurry and limited in time, you may make a quick two hour-visit to the first, third, and fourteenth historical complexes by car.
  • If your time allows a half day stay in Tripoli, you may consider visiting the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, ninth, tenth, eleventh, and fourteenth historical complexes.
  • If you want to visit the old city of Tripoli, you will need a full day because it is rich with unique historical and archeological monuments, caravansaries, and bazaars not present in other Lebanese cities.
  • If your visit is of cultural or scientific nature to study, observe, photograph, or paint, two, or even three, days will then be required to get acquainted with the historical architectural models available in the region of the Union of Faiha'a Municipalities, i.e., Tripoli, elMina, and elBaddawi.
  • If your visit is only for shopping and business, we confidently say that you have arrived to the correct place. Goods exhibited in Tripoli's bazaars are cheap and of good quality. No other Lebanese city may present cheaper prices than Tripoli. Shopping is advisable in the fourth, fifth, sixth, eighth, tenth, and eleventh historical complexes.
  • If you visit Tripoli during the month of April, then try not to miss the Tripoli Festival, organized on April 26 of each year, especially the Mameluke Parade.

The Mameluke Parade.

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