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Citadels in Syria

12972 Views 33 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  sssaltskin
Citadel of Aleppo

The Citadel of Aleppo stands at the centre of the old city of Aleppo, which was recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986. The earliest levels of occupation found at the Citadel go as far back as the sixteenth century BC. Most of what remains standing today was built by the Ayyubid (12th to 13th centuries) and Mamluk (13th to 15th centuries) rulers of the city who used the site for both military and ceremonial purposes. The citadel is built on top of a natural limestone hill rising some 50 metres above the level of the surrounding city and is a powerful symbol of the city’s heroic past. Inside the walls, a succession of invasions, bombardments and earthquakes have taken their toll.

Aleppo Citadel is one of Syria’s foremost monuments, much visited by tourists, and an important place of recreation for the city’s inhabitants.

www.akdn.org
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Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
Citadel of Aleppo
It is indeed very beautiful. Doesn't Damascus have one as well, one that's not open to visitors? I'd love to see some pics of that one!
Very nice. Hope to see it myself in May.
No pics of Krak de Chevaliers?
Citadel of Salah al-Din



The Citadel of Salah al-Din is strategically situated in the mountains off the Syrian coast approximately twenty-five kilometers east of Latakia on the way towards Aleppo. It stands on a long ridge encompassed by two gorges on either side creating a grandiose presence amongst the surrounding forested landscape. While the site was probably first settled during Phoenician times in the first millennium BC, the bulk of what survives today is from the early 12th century, Crusader period, including stone walls, high protective towers, and the presence of a moat. The eastern section of the site is separated from the complex by a deep chasm that connects the two ravines. A thin piece of rock twenty-eight meters high is all that remains in the middle of this rift; it once supported a bridge that connected the two parts of the site creating the citadel's main entrance at one point in time. Salah Ed-Din overtook the fortress in 1188 in what is noted as one of his most successful military campaigns. Succeeding Ayyubid and Mamluk administrations developed a palace, mosque, baths, cistern and a madrasa in the heart of the site.

The Ayyubid and Mamluk sections of the castle were restored by the Aga Khan Historic Cities Program between 1999 and 2001. The site was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2006.

Sources:
Ball, Warwick. 1998. Syria A Historical and Architectural Guide. New York: Interlink Books, 123.
Citadel of Salah al-Din

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