Grand Mosque of Damascus- Umayyad Mosque
VR Photo © Willy Kaemena
Willy Kaemena works currently in Syria for a German Company and in his free time he travels Syria to see all the historical places. See more panoramas from Syria, Portugal, Malaysia, Manila, Bangkok at his website.
The Great Ummayyad Mosque in Damascus is one of the worlds oldest, largest mosques and one of the most important Islamic architectural buildings in the world.
Originally at the place there was a temple to Hadad from 3000 BC.
Later a temple to Jupiter and in 379 AD a Church of St. John the Baptist.
From 636 and more than 70 years it was shared with Moslems who used the south wall as a mosque.
The present mosque was built by Ummayad Caliph Al-Walid from 708-715. The Christians got compensation with four churches at other places within the old city.
However other investigations of old texts claim that the Christians and the Moslems built the Church and the Mosque independently.
Anyhow it has been used as an example of Christian/Muslim partnership and that the "intolerance of Islam" against other religions that we see today in many areas was not practiced originally.
Perhaps today's Islamic fundamentalists should learn their history.
www.muslimheritage.com Ummayyad Mosque
Wikipedia Umayyad Mosque
Plan of the mosque