Negash Mosque (Ancient Mosque in Ethiopia)

Negash Mosque

Negash Mosque, Tigray, April 2009

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Negash, some 10km after Wukro, lies on a plateau commanding a magnificent view of the surrounding area.

Neagash got its name from Tigrigna word (the local language) "Negash or Negasi" meaning king. "Nejashi" is an Arabicized variant of the word.

The history of Negash begins from the 7th century AD, if not before. Although Negash is as old as the faith of Islam itself, it is Ethiopia's best-unknown place of Islamic worship. History has it that the early followers of Prophet Mohammed were denied the fundametnsl right to pursue the religion they prefereed and were harshely persecuted by teh Quraysh tribe, the mercantile rulers of Mecca. In order to mainatain the very survival of his religion, the prophet hadto seek a safe hideout for his followers. "Yonder lieth a country wherein no one is wronged: a ladn of righteousness. Depart thither; and remain until it pleaseth the Lord to open your way before you" said the Prophet, pointing to teh kingdom of Abyssinia. The then ruler of Ethiopia, or Najashi, granted asylum to the first refugees, eleven men and four wives, who entered the territory "in the 7th month of the year of Mohammed's mission (615)." The second "hijira" (flight) consisted of one hundred and one Muslims.

Souce: Excerpt from Tigrai:The Open-Air Museum page 21

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