3 Relics of Islamic Architecture in Nigeria

Nigeria is a country on the African continent with a Muslim majority population. Islam has been going down there for centuries. This can be seen from the existence of Islamic architectural relics in Nigeria.

Islam first arrived in Nigeria in the 9th century. The Religious Archives show Islam has been adopted as the religion of the majority of prominent figures in the Bornu Empire during the reign of Mai (King) Idris Alooma who served 1571-1603. Although at the time most Nigerians still adhered to traditional religions.

Today, Nigeria is the country that has the largest number of Muslim populations in West Africa. The Pew Research Center estimates that in 2010 there were 48.5 per cent Muslims in Nigeria out of the total population. This figure has decreased from 2009 which amounted to 50.4 percent. Muslims in Nigeria are predominantly Suni.

Here are three relics of Islamic architecture in Nigeria:

Gobarau Minaret

Islamic Relics in Nigeria:
Islamic Relics in Nigeria:

Gobarau Minaret is a 15-meter-high tower located in the center of Katsina City, Northern Nigeria. The tower, which has become a symbol of Katsina City, is an early testament to Islamic architecture in the city known as the theological center.

Gobarau became the first high-rise building in West Africa. The construction of the building is believed to have been completed during the reign of Sarkin Katsina (King) Muhammadu Korau (1398-1408 AD) who was the first Muslim king of Katsina.

2. Relics of Islamic architecture in Nigeria: Shekh Alimi Mosque

Relics of Islamic architecture in Nigeria: Hubbaren Shehu
Relics of Islamic architecture in Nigeria: Hubbaren Shehu

Shekh Alimi Mosque is located in Ilorin City, Nigeria. The city is widely known as the city of clerics and the center of Islamic knowledge. This nickname was obtained through the years of hard work of the founders of the Kingdom of Ilorin to spread the religion of Islam.Sheikh Alimi is recognized as the founder of the Kingdom of Ilorin.

Although, other scholars have argued that Islam had existed in Ilorin before the arrival of Sheikh Alimi who had the real name as-Salih. However, since the arrival of Sheikh Alimi in Ilorin, it can be said that it has changed the history of Ilorin and helped in the formation of the Islamic city.

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One of Sheikh Alimi’s contributions to Ilorin was the establishment of the Shekh Alimi mosque in 1810. Mosques were built as a medium to help spread Islam. This mosque is the first and oldest mas jid. Not only in Ilorin, but also throughout Kwara, Nigeria.

Relics of Islamic architecture in Nigeria: Hubbaren Shehu

Relics of Islamic architecture in Nigeria: Hubbaren Shehu
Relics of Islamic architecture in Nigeria: Hubbaren Shehu

Hubbaren Shehu otherwise known as the home of Sheikh Usman Danfodio is a remarkable example of the typical traditional Sudanese-Arab Islamic architecture and has remained unchanged for more than 200 years.

This place became as one of the famous centers of Islam although it was in the 19th and 20th centuries which was a period of missionary activity and colonialism in Africa.

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