Marrakech has seven patron saints who were Sufi mystics and Islamic scholars who are said to look after the city and each has a zaouia which is a mausoleum where pilgrims and those wishing for the help of the Saint or Sidi can pray at his tomb. The larger zaouias in Marrakech have mosques and they are charitable religious foundations who care for the sick, blind and crippled as well as orphans or the old and infirm. The spirit of charity is an important part of the role of the saints who were Sufi mystics and pilgrims give donations to the Zaouia. The concept of the Marrakech seven saints in Morocco predates Christianity and Islam and Cueta (or Sebta meaning seven),Jebel Hadid and Fez all have seven saints.
Tag: Sidi Bel Abbes
The famous Koutoubia Mosque dominates the skyline of Marrakech. Koutoubia Mosque is 77 meters high, including it’s majestic minaret, and was built in 1158 by the Almohad Caliph Abd al-Mu’min (1094–1163) then completed by his grandson the Almoravid Sultan Yacoub El Mansour in 1195. Caliph Abd al-Mu’min also built the Giralda Tower in Seville and the Hassan Tower in Rabat which was never completed. The towering square Koutoubia minaret in Marrakech is all the more striking because the limestone walls remain undecorated by modern restorers.