Last update:
February 25, 2012
Rabii Thani 3, 1433

Tripoli in the Travelers' Literature

The Mameluke Period (14th Century CE)

Tripoli > History > Tripoli in the Travelers' Literature: The Mameluke Period

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Quotes from the Mameluke Period

I came next to the city of Atrabulus [Tripoli], one of the principal towns in Syria. The city is intersected by rivers, lined with orchards and trees, annexed by the sea with its plentiful facilities and the land with all its good things. It has amazing markets and fruitful plains. It lies two miles inland, and has only recently been built. The old town was right on the shore; the Christians held it for a time, and when it was recovered by King Al-Thaher it was pulled down and this new town built. In this city, there were about forty of the princes of the Turks.

The city’s Prince Taylan, the renowned plaintiff known as the King of Princes, had a house named as Dar Al-Saadah. One of his habits was to proceed in riding every Monday and Thursday along with the princes and soldiers and go to the suburbs of the city. On his way back, and when he approaches his house, the princes got off from their animals and walked until he entered his house, then they leave. Each day, drummers would salute each prince at his own house until after the Maghrib prayer and fire the flares. Some of its eminent personalities included the secretary Bahaa El Din Bin Ghanem, a virtuous accountant known for his generosity, his brother, Hossam Eldin, a known scholar in Jerusalem and we have mentioned him earlier, and their brother Aladdin, the secretary in Damascus. Among them also is the agent of treasury Qawamu-l-Din Bin Makeen, one of the great men, and judge Shams Al-Din Ibn Al-Naqib, a renowned personality in Syria.

There are some fine bath-houses in it, including the bath-houses of judge Al-Qarmi and Sindamur, who was a former governor of the city. Many stories are told of his severity to evildoers. Here is one of them. A woman complained to him that one of the mamluks of his personal staff had seized some milk that she was selling and had drunk it. She had no evidence, but Sindamur sent for the man. He was cut in two, and the milk came out of his entrails.

Ibn Battuta, (726 H/1326 CE)


"Tripoli is a lowland-mountainous and seaside-inner-land city. Water can be observed almost everywhere. It is very difficult to encounter a house without trees because of the high availability of water. It has fruit products that never can be found in the neighbouring cities and regions, such as: Sugar cans, citrus fruits, dates, etc.. Many types of fishes can be found in its markets. Many types of birds too, never seen in any other regions."

Sheikh AlRabouweh (d. 727 H/1327 CE), "Nukhbat alDahr fi Ajaeb alBarr wal Bahr"


"The town of Tripoli has extended so much and it is very crowded. It has two hospitals and many mosques, madrassas (theological schools), bazaars, and caravansarays. All its buildings are made of concrete and whitened with gypsum from the outside and the inside. Tripoli is surrounded by many orchards and has many beautiful baths. It has a breath taking view when looked at from a near-by hill."

Ibn FadlaAllah AlOumari (735 H/1335 CE), "Masalek alAbsar fi Mamalek alAmsar"


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