Bou Inania Madrasa

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The minaret of Madrasa Bou Inania seen through Bab Bou Jeloud
Court and minaret

The Madrasa Bou Inania (also Bu Inaniya, المدرسة أبو عنانية بفاس al-madrasa ʾAbū ʿInānīya bi-Fās) is a madrasa in Fes, Morocco, founded in AD 1351–56 by Abu Inan Faris.[1] It is widely acknowledged as an excellent example of Marinid architecture.


The name Bou Inania (Bū 'Ināniya) comes from the first part of the sultan's name Abou Inan. The madrasa functioned both as an educational institute and as a congregational mosque.

This is the only madrasa in Fes with a minaret.[2][3] Opposite the main doorway of the madrasa is the entrance to the dar al-wuḍūʾ (ablutions house) for washing limbs and face before prayers. Left and right of the central court there are classrooms.

According to history, religious leaders of the Karaouine Mosque advised Abu Inan Faris to build this madrasa. It was the last madrasa to be built by the Marinids. The madrasa became one of the most important religious institutions of Fes and Morocco, and gained the status of Grand Mosque.

The madrasa was renovated in the 18th century. During the reign of Sultan Mulay Sliman, entire sections were reconstructed. In the 20th century, major restoration work was performed on the load-bearing structure, the plaster, wood and tiled decorations with Islamic geometric patterns.

The madrasa is one of the few religious places in Morocco that is accessible for non-Islamic visitors. Opposite the Madrasa Bou Inania is the Dar al-Magana, a wall with a hydraulic clock that was built in conjunction to the madrasa.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ William J. Courtenay; Jürgen Miethke, University and Schooling in Medieval Society, (Brill, 2000), 97.  – via Questia (subscription required)
  2. ^ Sheila Blair, Jonathan M. Bloom, The Art and Architecture of Islam: 1250-1800, (Yale University Press, 1994), 122.
  3. ^ Fez, Andrew Petersen, Dictionary of Islamic Architecture, (Routledge, 1999), 87.  – via Questia (subscription required)


  • Hillenbrand, Robert. 1994. Islamic Architecture. New York: Columbia UP, 240-251.
  • Hoag, John. 1987. Islamic Architecture. New York: Rizzoli, 57-59.
  • Michell, George, ed. 1996. Architecture of the Islamic World. London: Thames & Hudson, 216.
  • Mohammed Mezzine (ed.), Andalusian Morocco: A Discovery in Living Art, 99. [1][permanent dead link]
  • R. le Toureau, Fes in the Age of the Marinides, Oklahoma: Norman: 1961, pp. 120–7
  • Blair, Sheila S. ; Bloom, Jonathan M. The art and architecture of Islam, 1250 - 1800. New Haven and London : Yale University Press, 1994. pp. 122 – 123.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°03′43″N 4°58′58″W / 34.06194°N 4.98278°W / 34.06194; -4.98278