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The Holy Kaaba, Mecca, Vintage 1905 Islamic Calligraphy Art Beautiful Koranic Collectible Wrist Watch

WAT-053A

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40 mm solid brass case, premium leather strap, Citizen 2030 quartz movement.

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$162.99

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The Kaaba (Arabicكَعْبَة‎ kaʿbah IPA: [kaʕba], "Cube"), also referred to as al-Kaʿbah al-Musharrafah (Arabic: ٱلْكَعْبَة ٱلْمُشَرَّفَة‎, the Holy Ka'bah), is a building at the center of Islam's most important mosqueGreat Mosque of Mecca (Arabic: ٱلْمَسْجِد ٱلْحَرَام‎, The Sacred Mosque), in the Hejazi city of MeccaSaudi Arabia.[1] It is the most sacred site in Islam.[2] It is considered by Muslims to be the Bayt Allāh (Arabic: بَيْت ٱلله‎, "House of God"), and has a similar role to the Tabernacle and Holy of Holies in Judaism. Its location determines the qiblah (Arabic: قِبْلَة‎, direction of prayer). Wherever they are in the world, Muslims are expected to face the Kaaba when performing Salah, the Islamic prayer.

One of the Five Pillars of Islam requires every Muslim who is able to do so to perform the Hajj (Arabicحَجّ‎, Greater Pilgrimage) at least once in their lifetime. Multiple parts of the hajj require pilgrims to make Tawaf (Arabic: طَوَاف‎, Circumambulation) seven times counter-clockwise around the Kaaba, the first three times fast, at the edge of the courtyard, and the last four times slowly, nearer the Kaaba. Tawaf is also performed by pilgrims during the Umrah (Arabic: عُمْرَة‎, Lesser Pilgrimage).[2] However, the most significant time is during the hajj, when millions of pilgrims gather to circle the building during a 5-day period.[3][4] In 2017, the number of pilgrims coming from outside the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to perform hajj was officially reported as 1,752,014 and 600,108 Saudi Arabian residents bringing the total number of pilgrims to 2,352,122.[5]

The literal meaning of the Arabic word kaʿbah (كَعْبَة) is 'cube'.[6] In the Quran, the Kaaba is also mentioned as al-bayt (Arabic: البیت "the house") and baytī (Arabic: بیتی "My house") [2:125, 22:26], al-bayt al-ḥarām (Arabic: البیت الحرام "The Sacred House") [5:97], al-bayt al-ʿatīq (Arabic: البیت العتیق "The Ancient House") [22:29,33], and baytika al-muḥarram (Arabic: بیتك المحرم "your inviolable house"). The mosque surrounding the Kaaba is called al-Masjid al-Haram ("The Sacred Mosque").

Architecture and interior

The Kaaba is a cuboid stone structure made of granite. It is approximately 13.1 m (43 ft) high (some claim 12.03 m (39.5 ft)), with sides measuring 11.03 m (36.2 ft) by 12.86 m (42.2 ft).[7][8] Inside the Kaaba, the floor is made of marble and limestone. The interior walls, measuring 13 m (43 ft) by 9 m (30 ft), are clad with tiled, white marble halfway to the roof, with darker trimmings along the floor. The floor of the interior stands about 2.2 m (7.2 ft) above the ground area where tawaf is performed.

The wall directly adjacent to the entrance of the Kaaba has six tablets inlaid with inscriptions, and there are several more tablets along the other walls. Along the top corners of the walls runs a green cloth embroidered with gold Qur'anic verses. Caretakers anoint the marble cladding with the same scented oil used to anoint the Black Stone outside. Three pillars (some erroneously report two) stand inside the Kaaba, with a small altar or table set between one and the other two. (It has been claimed that this table is used for the placement of perfumes or other items.) Lamp-like objects (possible lanterns or crucible censers) hang from the ceiling. The ceiling itself is of a darker colour, similar in hue to the lower trimming. A golden door—the bāb al-tawbah (also romanized as Baabut Taubah, and meaning "Door of Repentance")—on the right wall (right of the entrance) opens to an enclosed staircase that leads to a hatch, which itself opens to the roof. Both the roof and ceiling (collectively dual-layered) are made of stainless steel-capped teak wood.

A drawing of the Kaaba. See key in text.
A technical drawing of the Kaaba showing dimensions and elements
Rukn al-Yamani

Each numbered item in the following list corresponds to features noted in the diagram image.

  1. Al-Ḥajaru al-Aswad, "the Black Stone", is located on the Kaaba's eastern corner. Its northern corner is known as the Ruknu l-ˤĪrāqī, "the Iraqi corner", its western as the Ruknu sh-Shāmī, "the Levantine corner", and its southern as Ruknu l-Yamanī, "the Yemeni corner" taught by Imam Ali.[2][8] The four corners of the Kaaba roughly point toward the four cardinal directions of the compass.[2] Its major (long) axis is aligned with the rising of the star Canopus toward which its southern wall is directed, while its minor axis (its east-west facades) roughly align with the sunrise of summer solstice and the sunset of winter solstice.[9][10]
  2. The entrance is a door set 2.13 m (7 ft) above the ground on the north-eastern wall of the Kaaba, which acts as the façade.[2] In 1979 the 300 kg gold doors made by chief artist Ahmad bin Ibrahim Badr, replaced the old silver doors made by his father, Ibrahim Badr in 1942.[11] There is a wooden staircase on wheels, usually stored in the mosque between the arch-shaped gate of Banū Shaybah and the Zamzam Well. The oldest door that still survives dates back to 1045 CE.[12]
  3. Mīzāb al-Raḥmah, rainwater spout made of gold. Added in the rebuilding of 1627 after the previous year's rain caused three of the four walls to collapse.
  4. Gutter, added in 1627 to protect the foundation from groundwater.
  5. Hatīm (also romanized as hateem), a low wall originally part of the Kaaba. It is a semi-circular wall opposite, but not connected to, the north-west wall of the Kaaba. This is 131 cm (52 in) in height and 1.5 m (4.9 ft) in width, and is composed of white marble. At one time the space lying between the hatīm and the Kaaba belonged to the Kaaba itself, and for this reason it is not entered during the tawaf.
  6. Al-Multazam, the roughly 2 m (6.6 ft) space along the wall between the Black Stone and the entry door. It is sometimes considered pious or desirable for a hajji to touch this area of the Kaaba, or perform dua here.
  7. The Station of Ibrahim (Maqam Ibrahim), a glass and metal enclosure with what is said to be an imprint of Abraham's feet. Ibrahim is said to have stood on this stone during the construction of the upper parts of the Kaaba, raising Ismail on his shoulders for the uppermost parts.[13]
  8. Corner of the Black Stone (East).
  9. Corner of Yemen (South-West), Rukan e Yamani. Pilgrims traditionally acknowledge a large vertical stone that forms this corner.
  10. Corner of Syria (North-West), Arabic Rukn e Shaami.
  11. Corner of Iraq (North-East). This inside corner, behind a curtain, contains the Babut Taubah, Door of Repentance, which leads to a staircase to the roof.
  12. Kiswah, the embroidered covering. Kiswa is a black silk and gold curtain which is replaced annually during the Hajj pilgrimage.[14][15] Two-thirds of the way up is a band of gold-embroidered Quranic text, including the Shahada, the Islamic declaration of faith.
  13. Marble stripe marking the beginning and end of each circumambulation.[16]
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