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'Oestlicher Theil des Thales Muna'. Photographer: al-Sayyid ʻAbd al-Ghaffār [‎11r] (1/1)

The record is made up of 1 collotype print. It was created in 1886-1889. It was written in Arabic. The original is part of the British Library: Visual Arts.

About this item


Genre/Subject Matter:

This landscape view shows ‘the eastern part of valley of Muna (Mina)’ from an elevated position, seven kilometres east of the Masjid al-Haram in Mecca. Muna (Mina) is a station of the hadj, where pilgrims camp out on the 8th, 11th, 12th (and some on the 13th) of Dhul-Hijjah , as can be seen in this image.

Right of centre, along the horizon, eight arches are set into a pale-coloured building. Otherwise no other permanent structures are evident, however, the rest of the flat plain that takes up the middle ground is dotted with many and varying tents, people, beasts of burden, such as horses, camels and donkeys. Small flocks of sheep or goats are visible in the foreground to the right of centre.

A ridge of hills rises along the horizon, with the highest point to the right of centre.

Arabic script written directly into the image has been erased subtly, but is visible upon close inspection in the lower left of the image as well as in the central sky area of the image.

This is the second of two photographs taken from the same vantage point, which form a panoramic view over the valley. The first is X463/11.


Above image, on the right, in ink: ‘XI’

Temporal Context:

According to 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, pp. 43-51), the photographs in this publication that pertain to the hadj (this image included) likely date to August 1888 since this was the period of the last hadj before February 1889, the date Christiaan Snouck Hurgronje received the final consignment of images.

Extent and format
1 collotype print
Physical characteristics


186 x 243 mm


Collotype print, pasted into volume


The print is in good condition with minor surface dirt and light abrasions throughout.





Written in
Arabic in Arabic script
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'Oestlicher Theil des Thales Muna'. Photographer: al-Sayyid ʻAbd al-Ghaffār [‎11r] (1/1), British Library: Visual Arts, X463/12, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 5 March 2024]

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