Kiswah in the reign of Muhammad (pbuh) Muhammad
(pbuh) and the Muslims in Makkah did not participate in the draping of the Kaaba
until the conquest of the city at 630 CE (7 AH), as the ruling tribe, Quraish,
did not allow them to do so. When Makkah was taken by the Muslims, they decided
to leave the Kiswah as it was until a woman lighting incense in the Kaaba accidentally
burned the Kiswah. Muhammad(pbuh) then draped it with a white Yemeni cloth.
in the reign of the Caliphs Many notable Caliphs have had their share of ruling
over the kiswah. For instance, Muawiyah I used to drape the Kaaba twice a year,
along with the help of Abd-Allah ibn al-Zubayr, and Abd al-Malik. They brought
the traditional silk covering in to effect. Another Caliph is Al-Nasir, the Abbasid
Caliph, notable to his contribution on starting the tradition of dressing the
Kaaba with one Kiswah at a time, instead of the now out dated "Accumulation
Kiswah", the process of putting new kiswahs on the older one. When the Abbasid
Caliph performed Hajj in 160 AH, he saw that the accumulated Kiswah could cause
damage to the Kaaba itself.
He therefore decreed that only one Kiswah should drape the Kaaba at any one time,
and this had been observed ever since. The Caliph Al-Mamoon, draped the Kaaba
three times a year, each time with a different color, Red for the eighth Dhu al-Hijjah,
White gabati on the first of Rajab, and another Red brocade on the twenty-ninth
of Ramadan. Later on, Al-Nasir the Abbaside draped the Kaaba with Green, both
AI Nasir and Caliph Al-Mamoon disagreed on the frequent color changes, and decided
after that to change the color into black, and black it remains to this day.
made by Egypt From the time of the Ayubids, precisely during the regin of
the As-Salih Ayyub, the kiswa was being manufactured in Egypt. It was being sent
in a huge annual parade before the hajj season. Material for the kiswah was brought
from Sudan, India, Egypt and Iraq. The tradition continued until the 1960s where
King Abd Al Aziz Bin Saud established the kiswah factory. This decision was influenced
by the worsening relations between the Nasser regime of Egypt and the government
of Saudi Arabia in addition to the worsening quality of the Egyptian made kiswah.
in the Saudi reign King Abd Al Aziz Bin Saud, concerned for the custody of
the Two holy Mosques, ordered that a factory for manufacturing the Kiswah and
in the same year, the Holy Kabah Kiswah factory was founded, and the first Kiswah
House of ALLAH in Makkah. The Kaa'ba is covered by a black cloth known as 'Kiswa',
which is produced & changed every year. Special factory designed for the making
of Kiswa in Makkah. It costs approx. SR 17 million.The cloth is made of 670kgs
of silver dyed black, about 120kgs of pure gold & 50kgs of silver used in
writing the Qur'anic verses over the cloth. The total area of the cloth is 658
THE HOUSE OF ALLAH.
It's Size and History!
The small, cubed building known as the Kaa'bah may
not rival skyscrapers in height or mansions in width, but its impact on history
and human beings is unmatched. The Kaa'bah is the building towards which Muslims
face five times a day, everyday, in prayer. This has been the case since the time
of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) over 1400 years ago.
old photograph of Kaba. Ordinary people used to have access to the inside
of Kaba but now it is available to only Kings and highly connected government
Size of the Kaba:
The current height of the Kaa'bah is 39 feet, 6 inches and total size comes to
627 square feet.
The inside room of the Kaa'bah is 13X9 meters.
The Kaa'bahs walls are one meter wide. The floor inside is 2.2 meters higher
than the place where people perform Tawaaf.
The ceiling and roof are two levels made out of wood. They were reconstructed
with teak which is capped with stainless steel.
The walls are all made of stone. The stones inside are unpolished, while the ones
outside are polished.
small building has been constructed and reconstructed by Prophets Adam, Ibrahim,
Ismail and Muhammad (peace be upon them all). No other building has had this honor.
Yet, not very much is known about the details of this small but significant building.
you know the Kaa'bah was reconstructed as recently as close to four years ago?
you know that the Kaa'bah has been subjected to danger by natural disasters like
flooding, as well as human attacks?
you didnt keep reading. Youll find some rarely heard of information
discussed below and discover facts about the Kaa'bah many are unaware of.
other names of the Kaa'bah Literally, Kaa'bah in Arabic means a high place with
respect and prestige. The word Kaa'bah may also be derivative of a word meaning
a cube. Some of these other names include:
ul Ateeq-which means, according to one meaning, the earliest and ancient. According
to the second meaning, it means independent and liberating. Both meanings could
ul Haram-the honorable house
Kaba has been reconstructed up to 12 times Scholars and historians say that the
Kaba has been reconstructed between five to 12 times. The very first construction
of the Kaba was done by Prophet Adam. Allah says in the Qur'ân that this
was the first house that was built for humanity to worship Allah. After this,
Prophet Ibrahim and Ismail rebuilt the Kaba. The measurements of the Kaa'bah's
Ibrahimic foundation are as follows:
eastern wall was 48 feet and 6 inches
Hateem side wall was 33 feet
side between the black stone and the Yemeni corner was 30 feet
Western side was 46.5 feet
this, there were several constructions before the Prophet Muhammads time.
Reconstruction of Kaa'bah by Quraish Prophet Muhammad participated in one of its
reconstructions before he became a Prophet. After a flash flood, the Kaba was
damaged and its walls cracked. It needed rebuilding. This responsibility was divided
among the Quraishs four tribes. Prophet Muhammad helped with this reconstruction.
Once the walls were erected, it was time to place the Black Stone, (theHajar ul
Aswad) on the eastern wall of the Kaba. Arguments erupted about who would have
the honor of putting the Black Stone in its place. A fight was about to break
out over the issue, when Abu Umayyah, Makkahs oldest man, proposed that
the first man to enter the gate of the mosque the following morning would decide
the matter. That man was the Prophet. The Makkans were ecstatic. "This is
the trustworthy one (Al-Ameen)," they shouted in a chorus. "This is
Muhammad". He came to them and they asked him to decide on the matter. He
agreed. Prophet Muhammad proposed a solution that all agreed to-putting the Black
Stone on a cloak, the elders of each of the clans held on to one edge of the cloak
and carried the stone to its place. The Prophet then picked up the stone and placed
it on the wall of the Kaa'bah. Since the tribe of Quraish did not have sufficient
funds, this reconstruction did not include the entire foundation of the Kaba as
built by Prophet Ibrahim. This is the first time the Kaba acquired the cubical
shape it has now unlike the rectangle shape which it had earlier.
portion of the Kaa'bah left out is called Hateem now. Construction After the Prophets
Time-Abdullah ibn az-Zubayr The Syrian army destroyed the Kaa'bah in Muharram
64 (Hijri date) and before the next Hajj Abdullah ibn az-Zubayr, may Allah be
pleased with him, reconstructed the Kaa'bah from the ground up.
az-Zubayr wanted to make the Kaba how the Prophet Muhammad wanted it, on the foundation
of the Prophet Ibrahim. Ibn az-Zubayr said, "I heard Aa'ishah (may Allah
be pleased with her) say, 'The Prophet said: "If your people had not quite
recently abandoned the Ignorance (Unbelief), and if I had sufficient provisions
to rebuild it [the Kaba], I would have added five cubits to it from the Hijr.
Also, I would make two doors; one for people to enter therein and the other to
az-Zubayr said, "Today, I can afford to do it and I do not fear the people.
Ibn az-Zubayr built the Kaba on Prophet Ibrahims foundation. He put the
roof on three pillars with the wood of Aoud (a perfumed wood with aroma which
is traditionally burned to get a good smell out of it in Arabia).In his construction
he put two doors, one facing the east the other facing the west, as the Prophet
wanted but did not do in his lifetime. He rebuilt the Kaa'bah on the Prophet Ibrahims
foundation, which meant that the Hateem area was included. The Hateem is the area
adjacent to the Kaa'bah enclosed by a low semi-circular wall.
ibn az-Zubayr also made the following additions and modifications:
a small window close to the roof of the Kaba to allow for light.
the door of the Kaba to ground level and added a second door to the Kaa'bah.
nine cubits to the height of the Kaa'bah, making it twenty cubits high.
walls were two cubits wide.
the pillars inside the House to three instead of six as were earlier built by
reconstruction, ibn az-Zubayr put up four pillars around Kaba and hung cloth over
them until the building was completed. People began to do Tawaf around these pillars
at all times, so Tawaf of the Kaa'bah was never abandoned,even during reconstruction.
Abdul Malik bin Marwans time
In 74 Hijri (or 693 according to the
Gregorian calendar), Al-Hajjaj bin Yusuf al-Thaqafi, the known tyrant of that
time, with the approval of Umayyad KHALIFAH Abdul Malik bin Marwan, demolished
what Ibn az-Zubayr had added to it from the older foundation of Prophet Ibrahim,
restore its old structure as the Quraish had it. Some of the changes he made were
rebuilt it in the smaller shape which is found today
out the Hateem
up the western door (whose signs are still visible today) and left the rest as
it was pulled down the wall in the Hateem area.
the wooden ladder Ibn az-Zubayr had put inside the Kaba.
the door's height by five cubits
Abdul Malik bin Marwan came for Umra and heard the Hadith that it was wish of
Prophet for the Kaa'bah to be constructed the way Abdullah ibn az-Zubayr had built
it, he regretted his actions.
Malik's advice to the KHALIFAH Harun al Rasheed Abbasi Khalifa Harun al Rasheed
wanted to rebuild the Kaa'bah the way the Prophet Muhammad wanted and the way
Abdullah ibn az-Zubayr built it. But when he consulted Imam Malik, the Imam asked
the KHALIFAH to change his mind because constant demolition and rebuilding is
not respectful and would become a toy in the hands of kings. Each one would want
to demolish and rebuild the Kaa'bah.Based on this advice, Harun al Rasheed did
not reconstruct the Kaba. The structure remained in the same construction for
966 years, with minor repairs here and there.
during Sultan Murad Khans time
In the year 1039 Hijri, because of
heavy rain, flood and hail, two of the Kaabahs walls fell down. The flood
during which this occurred took place on the 19th of Shaban 1039 Hijri which continued
constantly, so the water in the Kaba became almost close to half of its walls,
about 10 feet from the ground level. On Thursday the 20th of Shaban 1039 Hijri,
the eastern and western walls fell down. When flood receded on Friday the 21st
of Shaban, the cleanup started. Again, a curtain, the way Abdullah ibn az-Zubayr
established on 4 pillars, was put up, and the reconstruction started on the 26th
of Ramadan. The rest of the walls except for the one near the Black Stone, were
demolished. By the 2nd of Zul-Hijjah 1040 the construction was taking place under
the guidance of Sultan Murad Khan, the Ottoman Khalifa. From the point of the
Black stone and below, the current construction is the same as that done by Abdullah
ibn az-Zubayr. The construction which was done under the auspices of Murad Khan
was exactly the one done at the time of Abdul Malik ibn Marwan which is the way
the Quraysh had built it before Prophethood.On Rajab 28-1377, One historian counted
the total stones of the Kaba and they were 1,614. These stones are of different
shapes. But the stones which are inside the outer wall which is visible are not
counted in there.
of the Kaba In 1996
A major reconstruction of the Kaba took place between
May 1996 and October 1996. This was after a period of about 400 years (since Sultan
Murad Khans time). During this reconstruction the only original thing left
from the Kaa'bah are the stones. All other material has been replaced including
the ceiling and the roof and its wood.
is inside the Kaba?
are two pillars inside (others report 3 pillars)
is a table on the side to put items like perfume
are two lantern-type lamps hanging from the ceiling
space can accommodate about 50 people
are no electric lights inside
walls and floors are of marble
are no windows inside
is only one door
upper inside walls of the Kaba were covered with some kind of curtain with the
Kalimah written on it.