Kairouan


Kairouan
Fr. /kerdd wahonn"/, n.
a city in NE Tunisia: a holy city of Islam. 54,000.
Also, Kairwan /kuyeur wahn"/.

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or Al-Qayrawān

City (pop., 1994: 102,600), northeastern Tunisia.

A religious centre of Islam, it was founded in 670 by the Arab general Sīdī ʽUqbah and became the first Arab city in the Maghrib. It was chosen as the Maghrib capital by the Aghlabid dynasty с 800. It served as an administrative, commercial, religious, and intellectual centre under the Fātimid and Zīrid dynasties. The rise of Tunis, the new capital, led to Kairouan's decline and its devastation by Bedouin in the 11th century. It is the site of the 9th-century Great Mosque of the Qayrawān, one of the city's 150 mosques.

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also spelled  Al-Qayrawān ,  Qairouan , or  Kairouan 

      town located in north-central Tunisia. The town, one of the holy cities of Islam, lies on the Basse Steppe (Low Steppes), a semiarid alluvial plain southeast of the Central Tell. Tradition holds that the town was founded in 670 by ʿUqbah ibn Nāfiʿ (Sīdī ʿUqbah), a companion of the Prophet Muhammad, on the site of the Byzantine fortress of Kamouinia. The town served as the camp from which the offensive was launched that resulted in the Islamic political and religious subjugation of the Maghrib (northwest Africa). It was chosen as the capital of the Maghrib by the first Aghlabid (Aghlabid dynasty) ruler about 800. The Maliki (Mālikīyah) school of Islam emerged there, as clerics challenged the personal and political excesses of the Aghlabid emirs. Subsequently, the town served (with Mahdia [Al-Mahdiyyah]) as the political centre through the Fāṭimid (Fāṭimid Dynasty) and Zīrid (Zīrid Dynasty) dynasties into the 11th century, becoming one of the great administrative, commercial, religious, and intellectual centres of Islam. It also served as the site of a famous medical research centre for both Jews and Muslims in the medieval period. As a result of Bedouin incursions in the 11th century, the decline of steppe cultivation in favour of nomadic life, and the rise of Tunis as capital, Kairouan declined into an isolated market town for nomads.

 Modern Kairouan trades in grain and livestock that are raised in the surrounding region, and it is an important carpet and handicrafts centre. The town has expanded rapidly with the establishment of a university and some light industry. Tourism has also begun to make an impact, notably fueling the conservation of the old city and the development of the town's Musée d'Art Islamique. A road and railway link it with Sousse (Sūsah), 38 miles (61 km) to the east. Kairouan's rampart-enclosed medina (75 acres [30 hectares]) contains the Great Mosque, with a 115-foot- (35-metre-) high minaret. Originally built by Sīdī ʿUqbah in the 7th century, the present mosque is the fifth mosque built on the site and dates from Aghlabid times. Outside the town is the zāwiyah (seat of a religious fraternity) of Sīdī Sahab, containing the tomb of one of the companions of Muhammad, and an Aghlabid reservoir, an open circular pool 420 feet (128 metres) in diameter dating from the 9th century. The old city of Kairouan was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1988. Pop. (2004) 117,903.
 

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Kairouan — DMS …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • KAIROUAN — (Qairuwān) Tunisian town situated 77 mi. (125 km.) S. of tunis . Kairouan was founded in 670 by ʿUqbaibn Nāfiʿ, the Arab conqueror of North Africa. For about four centuries it was the government center and the capital of the aghlabids , the… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • KAIROUAN — KAIROUA Après la victoire des Arabes sur les Byzantins en 647, S 稜d 稜 ‘Uqba ibn N fi‘ fonda en 670, à 60 kilomètres de Sousse, Kairouan ou Qayraw n (terme qui signifie place d’armes). C’était un campement permanent, à l’abri des attaques de la… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Kairouan —   [kaɪru aːn, kɛr van, französisch], arabisch Al Qairawan [ kaɪ ], Stadt in Zentraltunesien, im Becken von Kairouan in der Tieflandsteppe, 60 m über dem Meeresspiegel, 72 300 Einwohner; eine der vier heiligen Städte des Islams (Pilgerstätte);… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Kairouan — [ker wän′] city in NE Tunisia: holy city of the Muslims: pop. 103,000 …   English World dictionary

  • Kairouan — 35° 40′ N 10° 05′ E / 35.67, 10.09 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kairouan — Infobox World Heritage Site WHS = Kairouan State Party = TUN Type = Cultural Criteria = i, ii, iii, v, vi ID = 499 Region = Arab States Year = 1988 Session = 12th Link = http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/499Kairouan (Arabic القيروان) (also known as… …   Wikipedia

  • Kairouan — Original name in latin Kairouan Name in other language Al Qayrawan, Al Qayrawn, Al Kayrawan, Al Kayrawn, Al Qayrawan, Al Qayrawn, Kairouan, Kairuan, Kairuanas, Kairun, Kairwan, Kajruan, Kajruano, Kayravan, Keruan, QKN, Qairawan, Qairawn, Qairouan …   Cities with a population over 1000 database

  • Kairouan — geographical name city NE Tunisia population 54,546 …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Kairouan — Al Qayrawan …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione


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