When I saw them snow-covered a few years ago The Atlas Mountains from a rooftop in Marrakesh, in the south Morocco, I suddenly came to think of the descriptions of Leo Afrikaneren (ca. 1485–1554). Or al-Hasan ibn Muhammad al-Wazzan al-Fasi, as he was originally called when he was born in Granada, Spain. Like most Jews and Muslims, he and his family had to flee across the Mediterranean and to Africa when the Inquisition banned them in Catholic Spain from August 1492.
And that was where Leo the African came, to the mountains of present-day Morocco. He began studying in Fez, a little further north, at al-Karaouine University – founded as a madrasa (school) by the Muslim woman Fatima al-Fihri (d. 880) in the year 859.
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