Chapter

The Princely Patron

Garth Fowden

in Qusayr 'Amra

Published by University of California Press

Published in print September 2004 | ISBN: 9780520236653
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520929609 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520236653.003.0005
The Princely Patron

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The identity of the prince is described in detail. Quṣayr 'Amra is unlikely to have been its patron's sole investment in Balqā'. If al-Walīd had one powerful motivation besides pleasure, it was the desire to shock. The plan of the bath house is not unlike that of Quṣayr 'Amra; but most interesting of all is the collection of luxury household objects that was found in the mansion. al-Walīd “disliked inhabited places. . . kept on the move, and was often hunting,” according to al-Tabarī, writing with particular reference to the period when he was caliph. It would be perverse to deny Quṣayr 'Amra any intimation of its patron's personality. At the end of his reign, al-Walīd's enemies denounced him as, precisely, a reckless rebel against God, a corrupter of religion and society.

Keywords: prince; Quṣayr 'Amra; al-Walīd; Balqā'; God; bath house

Chapter.  14340 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Greek and Roman Archaeology

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