Al-Hussein Mosque, Cairo

The Al Hussein Mosque is famously known for it’s housing the oldest complete manuscript of the Holy Qu’ran. It’s location is also in an immensely popular street next to Khan Khalili Bazaar attracting many tourists from overseas and Muslim pilgrimages. 


Approximately 30 minutes from Downtown and in the district of Khan Khalili and Old Cairo, it is easily accessible both as an individual traveller or in a Guided tour group. 


As the Al Hussein Mosque has an ancient heritage which includes an original manuscript of the Holy Qu’ran, the Mosque is often frequented by dignitaries praying there on special occasions. It’s cool marble, green and silver interior guards the head of Hussien. The grandson of the Prophet Muhammed, Hussein was killed in Iraq in 680 by the Umayyads, who had earlier been recognized as Muhammed’s successors against the claims of his son-in-law, Ali, Hussein’s father. This generation power struggle over the caliphate caused an enduring schism within Islam. The Muslim world’s Sunni (‘followers of the way’) majority not only recognized the Umayyads caliphate but forbade the office to anyone of Ali’s line. Conversely, the Shia (‘partisans of Ali’) minority refused to accept any leader but a descendant of Ali, and revered Hussein as a martyr. In Egypt, whose Muslim population is almost completely Sunni, Hussein is nevertheless regarded as a popular Saint, ranked beside Saiyida Zeinab, the Prophet’s granddaughter.
Another very interesting visual addition in front of the Mosque, are the huge ornate giant umbrellas which are placed there for different reasons. Firstly to protect Muslims praying outside the Mosque on intensely hot summer days and also act as a shelter when the seasons occasionally produce heavy rainfall. These umbrellas are operated electronically and are said to be the design from many Mosques in Saudi Arabia. 


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