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Al-Maqdisī (Al-Muqaddasī)
Native name Muhammad ibn Ahmad Shams al-Din Al-Maqdisi
Born c. 945/946 CE
Died 991 CE
Fatimid Caliphate
Residence Islamic civilization
Academic background
Influences Al-Balkhi
Academic work
Era Islamic Golden Age
School or tradition Balkhi school
Main interests Islamic geography
Notable works The Best Divisions in the Knowledge of the Regions

Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad Shams al-Dīn al-Maqdisī (Arabic: محمد بن أحمد شمس الدين المقدسي‎), also transliterated as al-Maqdisī or el-Mukaddasi , (c. 945/946 - 991) was a medieval Arab[1][2] geographer, author of Aḥsan al-taqāsīm fī maʿrifat al-aqālīm (The Best Divisions in the Knowledge of the Regions), as well as author of the book, Description of Syria (Including Palestine). He is one of the earliest known historical figures to self-identify as a Palestinian during his travels.[3][4]


The regions of Islam in the tenth century, based on Al-Maqdisi's work

Al-Maqdisi, "the Jerusalemite" was born in Jerusalem in 946 AD. He had the advantage of an excellent education and after having made the Pilgrimage to Mecca in his twentieth year, determined to devote himself to the study of geography. For the purpose of acquiring the necessary information he undertook a series of journeys which lasted over a score of years, and carried him in turn through all the countries of Islam. It was only in 985 that he set himself to write his book, which gives us a systematic account of all the places and regions he had visited. Le Strange comments of Al-Maqdisi's work: "His description of Palestine, and especially of Jerusalem, his native city, is one of the best parts of the work. All that he wrote is the fruit of his own observation, and his descriptions of the manners and customs of the various countries, bear the stamp of a shrewd and observant mind, fortified by profound knowledge of both books and men." (From: Guy le Strange, 1890: Palestine Under The Muslims p.5 - p.6)


  1. ^ Rahman, Mushtaqur. "Al‐Muqaddasī". Springer Link. Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  2. ^ 1, 2. "Al-Muqaddasi of Palestine : The greatest geographer of all time". muslimnews24. Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  3. ^ Al-Ju’beh, Nazmi (2008). Heacock, Roger, ed. Temps et espaces en Palestine: Flux et résistances identitaires. Beirut, Lebanon: Presses de l’Ifpo. pp. 205–231. ISBN 9782351592656. Archived from the original on 19 Mar 2018.
  4. ^ al-Maqdīsī, Muḥammad Ibn-Aḥmad (2003). Riḥlat al-Maqdisī : aḥsan at-taqāsīm fī maʻrifat al-aqālīm ; 985 - 990. Beirut: al-Muʼassasa al-ʻArabīya li-'d-dirāsāt wa-'n-našr [u.a.] / The Arab Institute for Studies and Publishing. p. 362. ISBN 9953441359. Retrieved 19 March 2018.


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