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Plate 236 Bazaar Leading To The Mosque El Mooristan - After David Roberts
  • Plate 236 Bazaar Leading To The Mosque El Mooristan - After David Roberts

    Roberts writing in his journal on the 29th December 1838 said 'The subjects are splendid, but very hard to draw in these narrow, crowded streets, although the passers-by usually behave very well towards me.' [1]


    This view of a crowded road leading to the Mosque of Sultan Qalawun is characteristic feature of Roberts' time in Cairo. The artist often stood out due to his European attire and was clearly a curiosity to the locals. 'The complex, built in 1285 by Sultan al-Mansur Qalawun and consisting of a madrasa, the sultan's mausoleum and a hospital, is one of the most magnificent monuments in Cairo. The most interesting and in many ways innovatory feature of this group of buildings (to which a madrasa was added by the sultan's son in the late 13th century) is certainly the hospital...which retained its function as a shelter for the sick and a centre for the study of medicine until the 19th century. The hospital, called maristan (place of illness), was far ahead of its time, as was Arab medical science, which was still taught in Europe at the beginning of the last century.' [2]


    The drawings and watercolours from this tour by David Roberts of the Holy Land and Egypt were collated together into folios and released over a seven-year period by the publisher F.G. Moon from 20 Threadneedle Street London. This lithograph was published on December 1st 1848.


    Medium: Original First Edition Lithograph, with later hand-colouring on thick woven paper.


    Full Plate 236.


    Inscribed l.r. 'David Roberts R.A. L Haghe Lith' and l.l. 'Mosque El Mooristan Cairo', 50.1 x 33.1 cm (lithograph size), framed.




    [1] David Roberts' Egyptian and Holy Land Journal, 31st December 1838.


    [2] Fabio Bourbon (ed). Yesterday and Today: Egypt. Swan Hill Press: London, 1996, p.207. Translated by A.B.A. Milano.

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