© Sharjah Museums Authority

Name of Object:

Fragment of an interior Kiswa Cover for the Ka'ba in Makkah


Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (Sharjah)

Holding Institution:

Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilisation / Sharjah Museums Authority

 About Sharjah Museums Authority, Sharjah

Date of Object:

Hegira late 12th – early 13th century / AD late 18th – early 19th century



Inventory Number:

SM 2006 - 1325

Material(s) / Technique(s):

Lampas woven, red and beige silk


Length 655 mm, width 380 mm


Turkey, Istanbul


For four hundred years, the Ottomans sent money and gifts to Makkah and Medina with the Surre procession. The gifts included covers for the Ka’ba, made in Cairo and Istanbul, which were replaced every year. Old covers were returned to the palace in Istanbul, distributed to the faithful or sometimes reused.Textiles like this one were made in Istanbul and Bursa from the 10th century H/ 16th century to the early 14th century H/ 20th century. Woven in red and beige silk, they were intended for draping either the inner walls of the Ka’bah in Makkah or those of the Tomb of the Prophet in Madina. Their zig-zag design echoes that of the main kiswa but the religious inscriptions vary according to the textiles’ intended use. Here, the combination of texts with their emphasis on the Prophet suggests that this fragment was part of a hanging intended for the Prophet’s tomb chamber, which also houses the cenotaphs of his first two successors, the caliphs Abu Bakr and Umar ibn al Khattab.

Citation of this web page:

Ulrike al-Khamis "Fragment of an interior Kiswa Cover for the Ka'ba in Makkah" in "Sharing History", Museum With No Frontiers, 2020. http://sharinghistory.museumwnf.org/database_item.php?id=object;AWE;ua;18;en

Database entry origination:

Prepared by: Ulrike Al-Khamis

MWNF Working Number: UA 018

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