Samarra: Marble Workers

Date: 836 and later

The historian and geographer al-Yaʿqubi (d. 897-98), records the creation of the new city of Samarra by caliph al-Muʿtasim (r. 833-42). Al-Yaʿqubi writes the caliph brought artisans to the site to work on the construction project. These included marble workers from Antioch and elsewhere on the Syrian coast. Among them were men who created marble paving. See also: Mason; Marble Polisher; Opus Sectile Maker; Quarrier.

Citation: Ahmad al-Yaʿqubi, Kitāb al-buldān, ed., M. de Goeje (Leiden: Brill, 1892), p. 258. Translated by Arthur Rhuvon Guest in K. A. C. Creswell, Early Muslim Architecture (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1932-40), II, p. 229.

Also: Milwright, Marcus. Islamic Arts and Crafts: An Anthology (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2017), pp. 32-33.