Moslems: Shrine Renewed

In the early days of Islam, when conquering Arab armies swept across Christian Syria, mosque making consisted of seizing Christian churches, closing their western entrances, opening new doors to the north, and praying facing south across the aisles toward Mecca. A few decades later, Moslem caliphs began to raise the first authentic mosques, blending Byzantine and Persian architecture, and in 691 A.D. the Caliph of Damascus, Abdul Malik Ibn Marwan, completed the great shrine called the Dome of the Rock.

Over the centuries, the lead-sheathed wooden dome and most of the rest of...

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