Bab Antakeya

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Bab Antakeya

Bāb Antakiya (Arabic: باب أنطاكية‎, Aleppo Arabic: [ˈbæːb ˈntˤaːkjɛ], "Gate of Antioch") formed one of the most important defense gates in Aleppo, protecting the city from the west. Baba Antakiya is located in the centre of the western wall of the old city of Aleppo, and its name was derived from Antioch, the capital of ancient Syria, as the gate was the main exit which was leading to the city of Antioch.

It is one of the oldest gates built due to its strategic site thus going through several construction periods. Sayf al-Daula rebuilt the gate using its antique foundations and the Fatimids restored it during the 11th century. It went through periodical repairs and restorations until 1422. The Bab is well preserved today with both its towers still intact. The two massive Ayyubid defense towers were built with thick stone walls into which the deep arrow slits were discreetly inserted. The gate contains the shrine of Sheikh Ali al-Rumi in the southern tower.[1]

This gate was considered the main bab of the city during the Byzantine rule, but it lost its importance gradually during the Islamic rule, until the Mamluk era when the gate regained its vital role as a main landmark for the old city. The gate is toped by two rising parallel towers, being located under the one which is on the right side due to defensive tactics, consisted of white stones of big sizes (0.80 X 1.00 meters).[2] The main axis of the old Suq of Aleppo is originated from the Antakeya gate.

During the Battle of Aleppo in the Syrian civil war the gate became a key target for rebel forces who tried to take the old Citadel. [3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Tabbaa, Yasser. 1997. Constructions of Power and Piety in Medieval Aleppo.The Pennsylvania State University Press. 22.
  2. ^ "E Aleppo: Bab Antakeya". 
  3. ^ http://www.internacional.elpais.com/internacional/2012/10/03/actualidad/1349283105_418340.html

Coordinates: 36°11′55.25″N 37°9′5.25″E / 36.1986806°N 37.1514583°E / 36.1986806; 37.1514583