Moroccan Imperial Cities – 2010 – Moulay Ismail Stables – Meknes

Day 2 – Saturday May 1 – The ancient royal stables were destroyed in the 18th century by earthquake. They were able to hold and care for 12,000 horses.

Moulay Ismail was born in 1645 and lived until 1727. He was known to be a ruthless leader, but he loved his horses.

He was a contemporary of Louis the XlV and Menkes is considered the “Moroccan Versailles.”

Slaves were used to create his monumental buildings and the stables. Each horse had a groom and a slave to care for them and all of their needs. He loved his horses more than most men.

There was even a canal that ran through the stables that provided fresh water for the Arabian, Berber and Arabian-Berber mixed horses.

The granaries were gigantic and could hold twenty years of feed for the animals. They were cooled by thick walls with water forced through ducts in the floor. A forest grew on the roofs of the buildings to keep the grain cool and fresh.

There is a long history of slavery around the world and the Arab world was no exception. They often sent men into the African interior and other places in Africa to gather slaves for their use in building and as workers in the homes of the wealthy. This is well known in history but seldom discussed. You can find the history of Arab slavery, easy enough, if you are interested.

The were few countries that did not use slavery to create their wealth and power. The west is not alone in this terrible trade, and it still continues to this day. Do some research and you will be surprised at what is still going on in Africa today.