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  Sultan Hassan Mosque
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This magnificent monument, built in 1350, is the largest mosque in the city of Cairo. It was originally built to house 400 students -- however, the cost was so high that it was never completed. The mosque is situated beneath the royal residences of the citadel and overlooks the square where the hippodrome and horse market were located. Because of its proximity to the citadel, the mosque was at one point besieged by attacking enemies who found it useful to fire at the citadel from the top of the mosque. The original dome of the mosque rested above the mausoleum was bulbous and covered with lead. This is no longer present, however, and the present dome is not a proper imitation. On both sides of the dome stood two minarets. Only one of these minarets has survived until today and is the highest minaret of medieval Cairo standing at 84 meters. The mosque's portal is the largest in Cairo and is decorated with dripping stalactites. The bronze door that led into the mosque was stolen and placed at another mosque. Further into the mosque one enters the courtyard which is surrounded by four arched halls or iwans. Between the iwans are four doors each leading to one of the four different madrasas or Islamic rites. One of the strangest features of the Sultan Hassan complex is that the mausoleum lies behind the Qibla wall. This would have been highly criticized since Islamic custom stipulates that nothing should stand between the worshippers in a mosque and God. The domed mausoleum is the largest in Cairo and contains numerous inscriptions. Many of the chandeliers and lamps that once hung inside the mosque are now on display at the Cairo Islamic art museum. Midan Salah el Din. 3km southeast of Midan el Tahir
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