'Die Ka’bah'. Photographer: Muhammad S̱ādiq Bey

1781.b.6/3

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The record is made up of 1 photographic print. It was created in 1881. It was written in German. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers Documents collected in a private capacity. .

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Content

Genre/Subject Matter:

This west-southwest view inside the Masjid al-Haram of the Caaba and, behind it, the sacred mountain Jebel Abu Qubays (1220 ft / 460 m), which overlooks the Masjid al-Haram to the east. At the summit stands a squat, apparently unfinished structure which later became the Bilal mosque, according to later photographs, for example Photo 174/5 ( c. 1907).

The buildings that line the foothills of Abu Qubays, feature distinctive Ottoman-era architectural features, such as a roshan (known elsewhere as mashrabiyya, or enclosed balcony), which are almost unchanged almost twenty years later in the same view by the Delhi-based photographers H. A. Mirza & Sons (Photo 174/5).

Inscriptions:

Printed above image, in ink:

III

Printed beneath image, in ink:

‘Die Ka’bah.’

A circular 'British Museum' blind stamp is located in the lower right corner.

Temporal Context:

This photograph was likely taken by the Egyptian photographer, army engineer and surveyor Muhammad S̱ādiq Bey (1832-1902). The attribution is claimed by Durkje van der Wal in his publication Christiaan Snouck Hurgronje: The First Western Photographer in Mecca, 1884-1885 , Amsterdam : Manfred & Hanna Heiting Fund, Rijksmuseum, 2011, p. 40. As such the picture is likely to date to his 1881 visit to the city. How Christiaan Snouck Hurgronje acquired the image is unknown.

Extent and format
1 photographic print
Physical characteristics

Dimensions:

169 x 210 mm

Format:

1 photographic print pasted into volume

Condition:

The print is in good condition with one minor surface loss in the lower portion of the image.

Foliation:

‘III’

Written in
German in Latin script
Type
Photograph

Archive information for this record

Access & Reference

Original held at
British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers Documents collected in a private capacity.
Access conditions

Unrestricted

Archive reference
1781.b.6/3

History of this record

Date(s)
1881 (CE, Gregorian)

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'Die Ka’bah'. Photographer: Muhammad S̱ādiq Bey, British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, 1781.b.6/3, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100023619120.0x00002c> [accessed 13 April 2024]

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