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Al Aqsa Mosque (Masjid Al Aqsa), meaning ‘the farthest mosque,’ is the third holiest site in Sunni Islam. The site, on which the silver Dome sits, marks the spot where the Prophet Mohammed was transported from the sacred mosque in Mecca to Al-Aqsa during the ‘Night Journey.’
The Aqsa Mosque was originally a small prayer house built by the Rashidun Caliph Umar, then rebuilt and expanded under the Umayyad Caliph Abd-al Malik, and finally completed by his son Al Walid in 705 AD. After an earthquake in 746 AD, the Mosque was completely destroyed and rebuilt by the Abbasid Caliph al Mansur in 754 AD, and rebuilt again by his successor Al Mahdi in 780 AD. Another earthquake destroyed most of al-Aqsa in 1033 AD, but two years later the Fatimid Caliph Ali As-Zahir built another Mosque which is still standing today.