Raqqa: Construction Workers

Date: after 771

A Syrian chronicle attributed to an author known as Pseudo-Dionysus records that the construction of al-Rafiqa (next to the existing settlement of Raqqa/Kallinikos) involved the use of workmen brought from all over the region of Mesopotamia. The construction of al-Rafiqa started in 771 and continued until about 775.

Citation: Creswell, K. A. C., Early Muslim Architecture, volume 2 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1940), p. 39; Meinecke, Michael, ‘Forced Labor in Early Islamic Architecture: The Case of ar-Raqqa/al-Rāfiqa on the Euphrates’, in idem, Patterns of stylistic Changes in Islamic Architecture: Local Traditions versus migrating Artists, Hagop Kervorkian Series on Near Eastern Art and Civilization (New York and London: New York University Press, 1996), p. 11.