𝐌𝐚𝐬𝐣𝐢𝐝 𝐚𝐥-𝐍𝐚𝐛𝐚𝐰𝐢 𝐢𝐧 𝐌𝐚𝐝𝐢𝐧𝐚𝐡
This account that is widely reported and cited by numerous historians in regards to the reconstruction of Prophet Muhammad’s mosque in al-Madinah, which was torn down and reconstructed in the year 88 AH (705-706 AD) by governor Umar Ibn Abdul-Aziz under the direct order and command of Caliph Al-Waleed Ibn Abdul-Malik.
This information may be news to some people, however it is well documented and has been widely reported by every single one of the following classical historians and sources;
• Muhammad ibn Jarīr Al-Tabari (History of Prophets and Kings)
• Ahmad ibn Jabir al-Balādhurī (Kitab Futuh al Buldan)
• Alī ibn al-Husayn Al-Masʿūdī (Meadows of Gold and Mines of Gem)
• Ibn `Asakir al-Dimashqi (Tarikh Dimashq)
• Al-Yaʿqūbī, Ibn Fadlallah al-Umari, Ibn Jubayr, Ibn Battuta and many others……
Accordingly, it was reported that Umayyad Caliph al-Waleed Ibn Abdul-Malik sent a letter of correspondence to the Byzantine Emperor (Justinian II) seeking / demanding that the Byzantines supply him with material supplies and manpower towards the construction project in Al-Madinah for the renovation of Prophet’s Mosque, which for the first time in the history of Islam - included Minarets (4 to be precise).
𝐌𝐚𝐬𝐣𝐢𝐝 𝐚𝐥 𝐇𝐚𝐫𝐚𝐚𝐦 𝐢𝐧 𝐌𝐚𝐤𝐤𝐚𝐡
The Abyssinians (Aksumite Empire) had been converted to Christianity in the year 460 CE and they subsequently adopted the Greek language as their official administrative language, they also practiced Christianity according to the creed and methodology of the Byzantines.
According to Al-Tabari, they Abyssinians had conquered and colonised Southern Arabia (Himyarite Yemen) on no less than four separate occasions, the last instance having been in the year c. 531 CE following the massacre of Christians in Yemen by the Jewish king Dhu-Nuwaas, prompting Aksumite King Kaleb to mobilise his Abyssinian Christian army to march onto Himyarite Yemen and extract vengeance against their Jewish king, Dhu-Nuwaas.
A couple of years after this Christian conquest in Arabia, an Abyssinian general by the name of Abraha seized control of San’aa and declared himself its ruler. He went on to build a magnificent church in San’aa to commemorate his victory and establish his reign in Arabia. This church was known to the Arabs as al-Qalis and was said to have been built to rival the Kaa’ba in Makkah.More significantly, the Church was built with the help of the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I, following a letter from Abraha seeking supplies and manpower to realise the construction of this grand monument in Arabia.
Upon completion, the Church was said to have been adorned with expensive items including golden ornaments and exquisite paintings as well as elaborate tiles and mosaics made out of marble.Several decades later, following the advent of Islam in Arabia – the Kaa’ba was partially destroyed by the Umayyad Syrian army, who were dispatched against Abdullah Ibn Zubayr (who based his Caliphate in Makkah). Caliph Ibn al-Zubayr then reconstructed the Kaa’ba in the year 684 AD - using what were said to have been some of the remnants coming from three of the pillars originally used to built Abraha’s church (Al-Qalis) in San’aa, alongside fragments from its mosaic tiles.
This account has been cited by Muslim historians as evidence of how the Kaa’bah was eventually restored using remains of the old Church which was originally built to replace the Kaa’bah itself (Ironically).