Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Gawhar al-Siqilli Al Rumi a greek boy who became a great muslim general and founder of Cairo.

Gawhar was of Greek(Roman at the time) descent. His family originated from Sicily which at the time was an Arabic emirate.His name Al Siqilli means the Sicilian.Gawhar was born between 928-930. He was sent as a slave to the caliph of Tunis because of his exceptional  intelligence. He gained his freedom and worked as a secretary for the caliph's son.
The territories controlled by the Fatimids.Their initial base was Tunis but later Gawhar al Siqilli built their new capital in Egypt.

Soon he rose to become a vizier and assume the highest ranking position in the army. Initially he set out to conquer all of Morocco. After  he secured the western borders he turned towards Egypt which he conquered after a succesful siege of Giza .He ruled Egypt as a viceroy until 972. As a ruler of Egypt he founded the city of Cairo to be the new capital of the Fatimids. Eventually we know that Cairo rose to become the biggest city of Egypt since then. Gawhar also gave orders for the building of the Al Azhar mosque

Gawhar died in 992, stripped of power since 979 the last year he was still a regent .

It took four years for Gawhar to build the city of Cairo. Initially it was named al-Mansuriyyah . At the same time Gawhar ordered the building of the Al Azhar mosque which developed to be the third oldest university in the world.

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