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Ismaili History 556 - Construction of mosques

Dr. Sadik Assad writes in 'The Reign of al-Hakim bi-Amrallah' (Beirut, 1974, p. 86) that, 'Al-Hakim also built more mosques than any of his predecessors and perhaps, more than any other Muslim caliph.' He extended his benefactions to all the existing mosques, and was responsible for the building of many more. The mosque near the Bab al-Futuh, commenced by his father in 380/990 had been left incomplete. Al-Hakim completed it and made it the second congregational mosque of Cairo, known as al-Anwar. Making no distinction between public treasury and personal funds, he made lavish gifts to the mosques of Fustat and Cairo. He furnished the mosque known as Hakim's Mosque with lamps, mats and other requirements at a cost of 5000 pieces of gold. He presented to the old mosque at Fustat a candlelabrum with 1200 lights which weighed 100,000 dhirams. So huge was his grant that in carrying it to the mosque, the road had to be dug, and the upper part of the door had to be removed to carry it into the mosque. This present was taken in a procession with the commander-in-chief in the front with drums and trumpets and amidst shouts of tehlil (no might save God) and takbir (God is great). He also presented the mosque 1290 copies of Holy Koran, some of which were written in letters of gold. He also built a huge mosque near the Muqattam hills and presented to it carpets, curtains and lamps. He also furnished various mosques the items like the copies of Holy Koran, silver lamps, mats, curtains etc.' Makrizi also writes in 'Itti'az' (2nd vol., p. 96) that al-Hakim generously allocated 9220 dhirams each month for the upkeep of the mosques.

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