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Bayt al-'Aqqad

The History and Restoration of a House in Old Damascus

A part of the series Proceedings of the Danish Institute in Damascus (4) og the subject area


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440 pages ill.
Hardback
ISBN 87 7934 215 9

Edited by

With contributions by
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About the book

Today Bayt al-'Aqqad is one of 23 buildings in old Damascus which come under the UNESCO World Heritage programme, but when the Danish Institute in Damascus took over the house in 1997 it had been derelict for 50 years and was in a very sorry state indeed. In the following years Danish architects and restorers worked together with Syrian colleagues on an admirable restoration of the house. Step by step new aspects turned up, showing that the building was not only a beautiful house with a long history - the house is founded on the Roman theatre of Herod - but also that it contained fine examples of the most important periods in the architectural history of Damascus.

In this lavishly illustrated book, the story of the house and its "resurrection" is told by architects, restorers, archaeologists and historians and it is a must for anybody who has experienced the joy and fascination of Islamic art and architecture.

Press reviews

Marianne Barrucand, Université Paris IV-Sorbonne, Bulletin critique des Annales islamologiques

"Bayt al-Áqqad, siège de l'Institut danois de Damas, était jusqu'en 1992 l'un des palais mamlelouks à l'abandon classés par l'UNESCO; après quatre années de travail intensif, l'édifice répond aujourd'hui au double défi d'une restauration respectueuse des principales phases successives conservées et de la création du cadre fonctionnel d'un centre culturel moderne. Un livre superbe ateste la réussite des travaux, æuvre d'un groupe d'archéologues, d'architectes et de restuarateurs, rendue possible grâce notamment à la générosité de la C.L. David Foundation [...]."

"Les textes sont précis et bien documentés et la présentation du livre est attentive aux plus petits détails. Cette initiative danoise est exemplaire et servira, nous l'espérons, de modèle aux restaurations promises et attendues du patrimoine si menacé de tant de pays méditerranéens."

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