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Baghdad’s monuments: symbols of Iraq’s history

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Baghdad is characterized by many tourist attractions, including archaeological sites and museums, where there are various artifacts from prehistoric times until the 17th century AD, including jewels, coins and statues.


National Museum of Iraq


The National Museum of Iraq is located in Baghdad, where Iraqi works of art dating back to the Middle Ages are displayed. Following World War I, archaeologists from Europe and the United States excavated all over Iraq in an effort preserve artifacts. The museum houses discovered artifacts dating back to the Sumerian, Babylonian, Akkadian and Assyrian civilizations, and it also hosts many exhibitions from the pre-Islamic and Islamic eras, as well as Arab art.

 




Martyr’s Memorial

The Martyr’s Memorial was built during the reign of Saddam Hussein, who dedicated it to Iraq’s martyrs who fell in the war against Iran during the 1980s. Completed in 1983 by the Iraqi sculptor Ismail Fatah Al Turk, the memorial consists of an eternal flame between a 40-meter-high, split Arabesque dome covered in blue ceramic tiles, which lies in the middle of an artificial lake surrounded by parks and playgrounds. Below the memorial are an underground library, museum, lecture hall, gallery and other facilities.


Ancient City of Samarra


Samarra is located 130 km north of Baghdad on the banks of the Tigris River. The city runs 41.5 km from north to south, and it ranges from four to eight kilometers east to west. It contains many monuments and antiquities, with architectural and artistic designs throughout the city. Among Samarra’s most famous sites is the Grand Mosque with its spiral minaret, which was completed in 851 AD. Samarra had much influence over the provinces of the Abbasid state, as it served as the Islamic capital at that time. The city has also been listed as one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites.


City of Al-Hadar

The city of Al-Hadar, also known as Hatra, is a city of ruins in the northern part of Iraq, 180 miles northwest of Baghdad and 68 miles southwest of Mosul. This religious and commercial center of the Parthian Empire flourished during the first and second centuries BC and survived several invasions before it was destroyed in 241 AD.


Al-Mustansiriya University

Al-Mustansiriya is an ancient university founded in Baghdad by the Abbasid Caliph Al-Mustansir Bi’llah around 1233 and served as an important scientific and cultural center. It was built next to the Caliphate Palace on the banks of the Tigris River, close to Al-Nizamiya, which was among largest and most important universities in the world from the late 11th century until the Mongol invasion in 1258.


Dur-Kurigalzu

Dur-Kurigalzu is an important archaeological site built sometime around the 14-15th century BC by the Kassite king Kurigalzu I. Located 15 kilometers west of Baghdad, this ancient city was the capital of the Kassite dynasties, who ruled Babylonia for about five centuries.


Murjan Mosque and Madrasa


The Murjan Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Iraq, having been built in 1356. It is located on Al-Rasheed Street in the Shorja market area of Baghdad. It had also included a madrasa, where the four Sunni jurisprudential schools were taught, along with other subjects.

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