The Temple Mount in the Early Muslim Period



Muhammad’s successor, Caliph Omar, accepted Jerusalem’s surrender in 638 AD. The Early Muslim Period lasted till1099 AD. Muslims regarded Jerusalem as a holy city and Jews were again granted the right to live there and pray on the Temple Mount. Some sources record that Omar ordered the site of the Temple Mount to be cleared of rubbish, thus exposing the Foundation Stone of the Jewish Temple.
Caliph Abd al-Malik (685-705 AD) built a magnificent center for Muslim pilgrimage on the Temple Mount, called the Dome of the Rock. Completed in 691 AD, it was neither a mosque nor a place of prayer, but a shrine to the Foundation Stone of the Temple, commemorating the story of the Night Journey of Muhammad from Mecca to Jerusalem. On completion of the Dome of the Rock, Caliph al-Walid (705-715 AD) built a mosque called al-Aqsa above the Southern Wall of the Temple Mount, on the former site of the Herodian Royal Stoa. The Temple Mount was known to the Muslims as al-Haram al-Sharif (The Noble Sanctuary).