Journal of Islamic Archaeology, Vol 2, No 2 (2015)

The Fatimid Palace at Ajdābiya: New Data and Perspectives

Umberto Bongianino
Issued Date: 15 Mar 2016

Abstract


This is a reconsideration of the sole fully excavated palatial structure built by the Fatimids: the qaṣr of Ajdābiya in Cyrenaica (modern Libya). The structure, excavated by Abdulhamid Abdussaid in the 1960s and by David Whitehouse in the early 1970s, is the perfect example of how a small provincial site, generally overlooked by scholars, can nonetheless yield precious information on ‘royal’ architectural patronage, provided the archaeological data are combined with a close scrutiny of primary sources and a re-evaluation of other local, equally neglected monuments and finds. The aim of this article is not to present new archaeological data, but rather to serve as an update of the material published forty years ago in the light of recent scholarship on a number of related topics – including new editions of primary sources – while awaiting the publication of Whitehouse’s final excavation report.

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DOI: 10.1558/jia.v2i2.30166

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