CAIRO – 28 December 2020: Egypt’s Museum of Islamic Art in Bab el-Khalq currently celebrates the 117th anniversary of its establishment.
On this occasion, Egypt’s Minister of Tourism & Antiquities Khaled el-Enani granted Egyptians free entry to the museum on December 28.
This comes within the framework of the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities’s keenness to stimulate the domestic tourism movement, encourage Egyptians to visit museums and archaeological sites, and raise tourism and archaeological awareness among the various groups of the Egyptian society.
The Museum of Islamic Art in Bab al-Khalq, in the heart of Historic Cairo, is the largest Islamic art museum in the world.
It includes more than 100,000 archaeological masterpieces from Islamic arts from India and China, to arts of Arabia, the Levant, Egypt, North Africa and Andalusia.
These masterpieces have been characterized by the comprehensiveness of the branches of Islamic art throughout the ages, which makes them a beacon for Islamic arts and civilization.
The idea of establishing a museum for Islamic arts and antiquities began in the era of Khedive Ismail in 1869.
This was implemented in the era of the Khedive Tawfiq in 1881, when Franz Pasha collected the archaeological artifacts dating back to the Islamic era in the eastern iwan of Al-Hakim Mosque.
After that, a small building was built in the courtyard of the Al-Hakim Mosque, called the "Arab Museum", under the administration of Franz Pasha, who left the service in 1892.
The current building was inaugurated during the reign of Khedive Abbas Helmy II on December 28, 1903.