Tour the Aslam al-Silahdar Mosque

Walk through a 14th century mosque in historic Cairo.

By American Research Center In Egypt

Aslam al-Silahdar Mosque

This mosque was built in 1344 by Baha al-Din Aslam - a Mamluk prince with considerable political and social standing the the Mamluk royal court. It is one of the most important monuments from the Mamluk period and a prominent landmark in Cairo.  

Old Meets New

This mosque has been in use for almost 700 years and continues to be a fixture in this old Cairo neighborhood. Step inside and see how the historic features mix with modern elements inside this unique site. 

Protect and Preserve

To protect and preserve the mosque, the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) carried out a project from 2005 to 2009 to conserve both structural and decorative elements of the mosque.

Part of the conservation work was cleaning and restoring the intricate stucco designs and colored marble walls, both inside and on the exterior.

The mosque was designed with a central courtyard, surrounded by vaulted spaces on each end. There is also a decorative mosaic floor beneath the carpet.

Towards Mecca

The niche in the wall is the mihrab. It faces mecca, the direction of prayer for all Muslims. The wooden pulpit is the minbar where the imam, or worship leader, gives his lectures. 

This is the area where Muslims perform ablution (wudu), the ritual cleansing of the body before prayer.

To the Top

Follow the stairs up to the minaret and a view of historic downtown Cairo.

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Credits: Story

The conservation and documentation of the Aslam al-Silahdar mosque was implemented by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) in collaboration with the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities and was co-funded by AKTC and the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) under the Egyptian Antiquities Project (EAP) made possible through funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).  Click here to learn more about ARCE's conservation work.  

Story created by Tessa Litecky, ARCE

Visit ARCE at arce.org   

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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