Citadel of Qaitbay
Citadel of Qaitbay is a very popular landmark in Alexandria and in Egypt in general.
It was ordered to be built by Sultan Al-Ashraf Qaitbay at the time of his historic visit to Alexandria in the summer of 1477, and its construction took a period of two to three years, and the Sultan visited it after the completion of the construction process.
Sultan Qaitbay was one of the greatest sultans of the Burj Mamluk state and the Mamluk state in general, and he ruled Egypt for 28 years from 1468 to 1496.
History of the Qaitbay Citadel
In June 1477, Sultan Qaitbay traveled to Alexandria after his celebration of the Prophet’s Birthday in Cairo with his ministers
And among them was Prince Azbek the Egyptian army, The Prince Shabak and others.
Qaitbay historical visit to Alexandria:
The people of Alexandria welcomed Sultan Qaitbay with great celebrations
People lined the streets of Alexandria in large numbers of large traders riding horses decorated with colored fabrics and gold saddles and silver
It was a memorable day from the days of Alexandria.
The visit of Sultan Qaitbay was a historical visit to Alexandria
This is because Alexandria did not receive visits since the last visit of Sultan Al-Nasser Faraj bin Barquq the Sultan of Egypt.
Sultan Qaitbay stayed in Alexandria for three days, during which he visited her merchants and notables
Then he visited the current place of the Qaitbay Citadel, in which there was an Alexandria Lighthouse (one of the Seven Wonders of the World) and ordered that a tower be built on its foundation.
Sultan Qaitbay left Alexandria and visited some Egyptian cities, then returned to Cairo after a forty-day journey.
The construction of the Qaitbay Citadel:
Alexandria was one of Egypt’s most important states
But caused great economic devastation as a result of the Frankish attacks on it, and Alexandria turned to a representative governed by a deputy of the Sultan.
The Frankish attacks on Alexandria did not stop, and they hijacked commercial boats
Alexandria was subjected to numerous attacks during the reign of Sultan Qaitbay, hence the importance of building a fortress protecting it.
Sultan Qaitbay visited Alexandria after the completion of the construction of Qaitbay Castle in July 1479 to see the castle after construction and was very impressed with it
The vestibule of the castle was built on arches in the sea to extend from the coast to the castle, and it was established with a control point that enables you to observe the Franks boats for a “day march”.
A mosque and weapons storage warehouses were built and fortified with cannons ready to fight and a military to prevent the Franks entering Alexandria, and it came.
Qaitbay appointed Prince “Qansuh al-Muhammadi” as the head of the Citadel, known as “Qansuh al-Burji”.