Chapter

Al-Fustat and the Making of Old Cairo

Peter Sheehan

in Babylon of Egypt

Published by American University in Cairo Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9789774162992
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9781936190072 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5743/cairo/9789774162992.003.0005
Al-Fustat and the Making of Old Cairo

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Egypt was conquered by the Arab army. They laid siege to the Roman fortress of Babylon that lead to the fall of the fortress. As Egypt fell to the hands of the Arab army, it became an integral part of the Muslim and Arab world. The focus of Egypt's rulers and the destination for its grain and its wealth changed from Mediterranean and West to Arabian and East. After the conquest of Egypt and the expulsion of the Byzantine armies, the city of al-Fustat was founded around the site of the siege camp of Babylon. In the first century of its existence, the city grew at a phenomenal rate, mirroring the development of other camp cities founded by the Arab army. The explosive growth of al-Fustat took place on the amal asfal as well as on the rocky terraces, amak fawq, which rise to the east.

Keywords: Arab army; Roman fortress; Egypt; Byzantine armies; al-Fustat; Babylon; amal asfal; amak fawq

Chapter.  11898 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Society and Culture

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