Islamic Art museum


Location: Kerameikos   

The celebrated Museum of Islamic Art is located at the area of Kerameikos, close to the train station of Thissio. The museum, a department of the Benaki Museum, opened in July 2004 and is housed in a neoclassical building hosting approximately 10,000 items that date from the 7th to the 19th century.

The Museum of Islamic Art is regarded as one of the most renowned in its category, being home to exhibits of major cultural and artistic significance of the Asian historical ancestry. The rare artefacts and objects include weapons, jewellery, tools etc. that derive from countries where the Islamic civilization flourished, especially due to the establishment and expansion of the Ottoman Empire, such as Asia Minor, the Middle East, Arabia, North Africa - and even Spain. Antonis Benakis, the founder, engaged his collection in the early 20th century, and among the impressive items one can find rare door panels of the 8th century from Mesopotamia, a renowned saddle from Bursa and even the facade of a reception of a Cairo mansion from the 17th century.

The impressive neoclassical building is located at the corner of Dipylou and Agion Asomaton streets and is a donation by Lambros Eftaxias. During the restoration operations, archaeological research brought to light a tomb as well as parts of the ancient fortification of Athens. The findings were properly preserved and are open to the visitors.

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