Nabi Daniel Mosque, Alexandria, Egypt


ALEXANDRIA. – Nebi Daniel Mosque.
c.1910
Publisher: Livadas & Coutsicos

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The present Nabi Daniel mosque Alexandria built at the end of the 18th century. It restored in 1823 by Mohammad Ali. A smaller shrine preexisted on the site. It maybe was the mosque of Dzoul Karnein – the Sire with the two horns -. In fact, Nabi Daniel mosque Alexandria contains the remains of the scholar and venerated teacher Prophet Daniel. It also has his companion Sidi Lokman el Hakim, a religious story teller. The Arab legend of the Prophet Daniel appeared during the 9th century He told by two astronomers: Mohammad Ibn Kathir el Farghani and Abou Ma’shar. It mentioned that “a young Jew, Daniel persecuted and chased from Syria. It was by the idolaters whom he tried to convert. Moreover, an old man appeared in a dream urging him to go to war. The war was against the infidels and promising victory over all Asia. In fact . Nabi Daniel acquired many followers in Egypt. It is where he sought refuge and built Alexandria.
Alexandria Portal

In our search for the tomb of Alexander the Great, it should be noted that the ancient city of Alexandria has been sacked many times which, together with other calamities, led to its eventual and almost total decline. . . . In 1803, a Russian prelate from Kieve, the archimandrite Konstantios, attempted to find the tomb, but advises us that, “until the 15th century the location was known, but now even the tradition of the tomb has been lost”. Of course, the tomb was almost certainly lost far earlier than the 15th century. As our modern era overtook ancient times, while no one knew the true location of Alexander the Great’s tomb, local tour guides in Egypt, doubtless due to the repeated requests of tourists, found it prudent to produce such a tomb. Two such buildings found favor amongst these natives, which were not chosen at random, but because of local traditions surrounding the actual tomb. To the earliest of these visitors, they presented the old church of St. Athanasius, which would eventually become the mosque of Attarine. This was very convenient, for in its inner court stood a granite sarcophagus covered with hieroglyphs. . . . The other building that was shown as the tomb of Alexander by the early guides was the Mosque of Nabi Danial, not far away from the Attarine Mosque.
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Mahmoud Bey el Falaki, a noted Egyptian astronomer and engineer, visited the crypt under the Nabi Danial Mosque some ten years after Scilitzis, and reported entering a large room with an arched roof built on the ground level of the ancient city. From this paved room he records that inclined corridors branched out in four different directions. He stated that, “Because of their length and their bad state I could not survey them entirely. The rich quality of the stones used in the construction confirmed my belief that these subterranean passages must have led to the tomb of Alexander the Great”. El Falaki wished to pursue his investigations, but was not an archaeologist and he was forbidden to do so by his superiors. Various wild tales continued to be told however, about this crypt for many years to come.
Tour Egypt: In Search of Alexander the Great

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