Jerusalem in the Early Muslim Period (638-1099)

In the early Muslim period, Jerusalem is known both by its secular name Ilya (=Aelia) and by reference to its central feature, the “Holy House,” in Arabic: Madinat bayt al-maqdis (city of the holy house). The most important sources of our knowledge of late ancient Jerusalem are travel writings, including the famous Safarnameh (“Book of Travels”) by the Persian traveler Nasir Khusraw and Arabic literature in praise of the holy city (fada’il al-quds).

Here is a link to a meticulous documentation of references to the Haram ash-Sharif or Noble Sanctuary of Jerusalem in early Muslim times, a book by Andreas Kaplony, The Ḥaram of Jerusalem, 324-1099: temple, Friday Mosque, area of spiritual power (Franz Steiner Verlag, 2002).

For a comprehensive history of early Muslim Palestine see Moshe Gil, The History of Palestine, 634-1099.


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