Qasr al-Minya
Horvat Minnim, Israel
"The palace is contained within a rectangular enclosure (66 by 73 m) oriented north-south with round corner towers and semi-circular interval towers on the south-west and north sides. In the middle or the east side is the main gate formed by two projecting half-round towers separated by the arch of the gateway. The centre of the building is occupied by a colonnaded courtyard with twin staircases giving access to an upper floor level. In the south-east corner is the mosque which is divided into twelve bays supported on piers. Next to the mosque is a triple-aisled basilical hall, whilst to the north are the residential quarters.

The building is built out of finely dressed limestone blocks laid in regular courses with a lower course of black basalt blocks. The top of the walls were decorated with giant stepped merlons whilst the interior was decorated with a variety of glass and stone mosaics as well as marble panels.

The building of the palace is attributed to al-Walid (705-15) on the basis of a re-used inscription set into the gateway. There is evidence that the palace continued in use at least until the end of the Umayyad period and probably, on the basis of Mamluk pottery found at the site, later. Nearby are the remains of the medieval and Ottoman site of Khan Minya which was an important post on the Damascus-Cairo trade route."


Petersen, Andrew. 1996. Dictionary of Islamic Architecture. London: Routledge.

See also:

"Horvat Minnim". 2000. UNESCO World Heritage Website. [Accessed July 13, 2006]
Northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee (Lake Tiberias), Horvat Minnim, Israel
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Associated Names
Part of Site
705-15/85-96 AH
Style Periods
Variant Names
Qasr al-Minya
Palace of al-Minya
Khirbat al-Minya
Minya Palace
Qastal Minya
Building Usages