Jami' al-Mujahidi
Mosul, Iraq
The Mujahidi Mosque was located along the banks of the river Tigris in the southern part of Mosul, just outside Bab al-Tibn. The mosque was constructed by Mujahid al-Din Qaymaz al-Rumi, who was an atabek of Mosul and known for constructing many public works in his day. At its time of construction in 1176/572 AH, the Mujahidi Mosque was Mosul's third congregational mosque and the first built outside the city walls in the lower suburbs (rabad, pl. arbad) of the medieval town, hence its other ancient name, Jami' al-Rabad. 

The history of the Mujahidi mosque has been compiled by Sa'id Daywahji, a historian of Mosul and former director of the Mosul Museum. The mosque was constructed of brick and plaster, and known for its plaster ornamentation inside the mosque which included vegetation and Kufic script, which several medieval and modern travelers described. The exterior of the dome was also clad in tile that had a blueish-green tint.1 After an initial period of flourishing, the mosque's importance dwindled. After the Mongol invasion of Iraq and the Jazira decimated the population of Mosul, the size of the city shrank and most of the population retreated within the city walls, diminishing the need for the suburban mosque. Annual flooding of the Tigris and erosion of the banks onto which the mosque was built caused structural damage. 

It was not until the eighteenth century/eleventh century AH that the mosque was restored under 'Ali Pasha, the governor of Mosul in 1726/1139 AH. At this time the mosque became known as a shrine (maqam) to Khidr, a figure from Near Eastern legends associated with vegetation and the rebirth of the world in spring, aspects of whose character became conflated with aspects of the Biblical prophet Ilyas (Elijah).2

Thanks to its antiquity and associations with Khidr, the Mujahidi Mosque continued to be used from the seventeenth century up until contemporary times, although it can be assumed that its appearance had changed drastically, much of the original decoration having disappeared in modern renovations, and the form of the building also changing over time through destruction and renovation. 

It was reported on February 27, 2015, that the Mujahidi Mosque was deliberately destroyed by the Islamic State, following the destruction of several other religious sites, particularly those with significance for ethnic and religious minorities.3

--Matthew Saba, Visual Resources Librarian for Islamic Architecture, AKDC @ MIT. May 26, 2017


  1. Daywahji, Jawami' al-Mawsil, 57.
  2. Daywahji, Jawami' al-Mawsil, 62.
  3. Danti et al., "ASOR Cultural Heritage Initiatives," 102. See also http://www.monumentsofmosul.com/list2/10-i6


Danti, Michael D, et. al. "ASOR Cultural Heritage Initiaves (CHI): Planning for Safeguarding Heritage Sites in Syria and Iraq." nea-phss-14-001, Weekly Report 30, March 2 2015. Accessed: http://www.asor-syrianheritage.org/syrian-heritage-initiative-weekly-report-30-march-2-2015/

Daywahji, Sa'id. Jawāmi‘ al-Mawṣil fī mukhtalif al-‘uṣūr, 56-72 Baghdad: Maṭba‘at Shafīq, 1382 [=1963].
Mosul, Iraq
Images & Videos
Associated Names
1176-1180/572-576 AH (constructed)
2015/1436 AH (destroyed)
Variant Names
الجامع المجاهدي
Jami' al-Mujahidi
al-Jami' al-Mujahidi
Alternate transliteration
Mujahidi Mosque
جامع الربض
Building Usages
lost architecture