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Over the centuries, many intellectual hubs formed in Africa under Muslim rule. These included: Cairo in Egypt, Fez in Morrocco, Kairouan in Tunisia, Tlemcen in Algeria, and Timbuktu in Mali. Here, let us look at brief overviews of Cairo, Kairouan, and Timbuktu.
At the same time, numerous Muslims came to prominence in Africa and they continue to impact us today in one form or another. Renowned figures such as the ruler Salahuddin Ayyubi, the scientist Ibn Haytham, the traveler Ibn Battuta, the astronomer Ibn Yunus and the historian Ibn Khaldun all hailed from or settled in Africa. In fact, the famous Jewish philosopher, Musa ibn Mamun (or the Latinized, Maimonides), also studied and lived in Northern Africa for the larger part of his life.
In an effort to capture their significant contributions, we explore the lives of Salahuddin Ayyubi (also known as Saladin), Ibn Battuta and Ibn Khaldun below.