When I began my academic career more than a quarter century ago, I had to explain the term "Mamluk" at the beginning of my talks in conferences; colleagues did not have to clarify terms like "baroque," "rococo," or even "Tudor," or "Georgian." But what was really frustrating was that I had also to cajole my audience into seeing Mamluk architecture for the sublime tradition it is. Things have not changed much since, even though Mamluk studies have acquired their own journal, Mamluk Studies Review, and books on Mamluk architecture are sometimes reviewed in journals such as our JSAH. Mamluk architecture is still largely unknown to the architectural community.

This is truly unfortunate, for Mamluk architecture is one of the most spatially intricate, formally poised, and geometrically inventive medieval building traditions. It is also one of the most prolific and best...

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