Islamic Culture and Tradition

Be’er-Sheva’s Great Mosque (Jama’), financed by the local Bedouin population and built by the Ottoman Empire, was completed in 1906, but was never actually consecrated or used as a place of worhip. Until 1953, it served as the city’s courthouse, Great Mosque of Beershevawhen it was re-purposed to function as the Negev Museum of Archaeology. In the 1990s, it underwent a long process of restoration, followed by series of court cases to determine the appropriate future use of the edifice. Finally, in 2011, the Be’er-Sheva mosque finally reopened as the Museum  of Islamic and Near Eastern Cultures. 

A smaller, private mosque without a minaret, the Baseiso Mosque, was built in 1931 by a wealthy local resident, Haj Isa Baseiso, and was consecrated and actively used for Muslim prayer until Be’er-Sheva was liberated from the Egyptian occupiers during the Israeli War of Independence in 1948.

In the BGU Student Union Building, there is a room reserved for Muslim prayers.BGU Student Union

Hall of Justice - mineThe recognized, regional Islamic Shari’ah Courts are situated in the Be’er-Sheva Hall of Justice, with all the other regional courts.

The Muslim Cemetery is located at the edge of the Old City (across the highway from the Negev Mall) and has a number of graves of significant local Bedouin figures.muslim-cemetery1

Since “Our future is inspired by our past” – join the Society for the Preservation of Israel Heritage Sites You are welcome to come to the Be’er-Sheva Office of the Society, now located in the Old City at Mordey ha-Geta’ot 74 and/or call Michal Montal – 054-4606496.

Author: etheleakatzenell

I came about 45 years ago from Philadelphia, PA (a city of American founding fathers) to Be'er-Sheva, Israel (the city of Abraham, the biblical Patriarch) and have never regretted that move. Be'er-Sheva is a wonderful place to live and raise a family. My four adult children and 5 grandchildren, all born here, still live and work happily in Be'er-Sheva. This is a place of endless opportunity and open horizons.

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