Information about Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay Cairo

Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay is freestanding and elegant. In fact, it situated on Saliba street. Moreover, it is between Amir Shaykhu complex and the square below Cairo Citadel. Sultan Qaitbay ruled Egypt for some 29 years. He known as a patron of art and prolific builder. Of his many other structures, the best known is his mausoleum at the “City of the Dead”. It depicted on the one pound Egyptian note. His military edifices that crown the harbor in Alexandria. Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay is the first example of a freestanding version of this type of institution. Moreover, it usually incorporated into a corner of a mosque or madrasa (Islamic school).

In fact, this type of independent structure became a favorite type of urban endowed building. It was during Othman Period. Two mercies most commended by the Islamic faith. It is that of water to the thirsty and instruction to the ignorant. Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay offers indeed a good example of the trend in the later Mamluk period. Moreover, it applies a variety of rich decoration to the exterior of buildings. Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay built by Sultan Qaitbay in 1479. The upper structure is A kuttab, or elementary school. It has a trilobed portal on its western facade and large iron-grilled windows. Furthermore, below the facades of the Sabil, all decorated with poly-chrome marble. It inlays and carved stone in a style that approximates used in the later mosque of Qijmas al-Ishaqi.

Further details:

The ablaq courses of red, white and black renewed on the groin-vaulted trilobed. Its inlaid pattern and carved detail became more visible. It thus restored to its original glamour. Moreover, to either side of the portal vault carved medallions. It is with the name and epithet of Sultan Al Ashraf Abul Nassr Qaitbay. Today, this entrance of Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay is no longer in use. The interior of Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay now accessed through a plain door in the back of the building. The lintels of Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay joggled in the tradition of the Bahri Mamluk period. They inlaid with blue and white marble. They forms a variety of intricate arabesque patterns on the facade.

Above each window is two such decorative slabs. One is over the other. Both surmounted by medallions inlaid with arabesques in the same style. They framed by carved moldings. There are also bits of red stone and ceramic. In fact, they enhance the effect of stone and marble interaction. It is worthwhile to take a few minutes at Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay to examine the roundels, lintels and joggles. It is also for the corner columns of the facades. The marble veneer and carving are fine. Today, Sabil Kuttab Sultan Qaitbay neither used nor generally open to the public. In fact, its main attraction at any rate is its exterior.

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