Qubba Yunus al-Dawadar
Cairo, Egypt
The elongated, melon-shaped, ribbed dome with a slightly swelling curve on the left marks this earliest monument of the Circassian Mamluk period, a complex much ruined except for the tomb chamber. This is the tomb of Yunus al-Dawadar ('Jonah the inkstand-holder'), the executive secretary, or royal messenger, who supervised the execution of the sultan's orders - in this case, Sultan Buquq's. Like the earlier dome of the Sultaniyya, this dome prefigures the Central Asian style associated with the period of Timur. The base is decorated with alternating windows and panels. The emblem incised on these panels, however, is that of a cup, not a pen box, the standard symbol used by royal scribes. At one point, Yunus had been a cupbearer; because the sultan chose his cupbears from the most engaging and fetching boys at court, the use of the cup may represent an old man's desire to be remembered for his beauty rather than his brains. The shallow relief carving of arabesques around the windows in the transition is very attractive.

Yunus al-Dawadar is not buried here; he was killed in battle in Syria and his grave is lost. Anas, the father of Barquq, was buried here but was moved after the construction of Barquq's khanqah in the Northern Cemetery.


Williams, Caroline. 2002. Islamic Monuments in Cairo: The Practical Guide. Cairo: American University of Cairo Press, 71-72.
Bab al-Wazir Cemetery, Cairo, Egypt
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Associated Names
1382/743-84 AH
Style Periods
Variant Names
Qubba Yunus al-Dawadar
Yunus al-Dawadar Mausoleum
Qubbat Yunus al-Dawadar
Mausoleum of Yunus ad-Dawadar
Mausoleum of Yunus al Dawadar
Building Usages