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The Waqf In The City

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Chapter Summary

Waqf increasingly influenced and shaped numerous infrastructural aspects in cities in the Islamic world as well as in the daily lives of individuals living in the cities from the early Islamic centuries up through the medieval period to modern and contemporary times. A closer look at several large endowments established by influential personalities in cities within the Islamic world brings to light the huge impact that waqf foundations played in the urban infrastructure. Widely recognized for its indispensable role in creating and maintaining multi-layered infrastructural aspects in the Islamic city, the waqf foundations also occupied an important place in rural areas for reasons similar to the waqf's existence in the city. On an empirical and analytical level, the study of waqf foundation documents yields an intimate window into the daily practices of endowments in the Islamic city and the ways by which individuals used them for personal or public objectives.

Keywords: City; Islamic world; urban infrastructure; Waqf

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