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The charities providing drinking water to animals (hawd) were not as numerous in Cairo as those serving people (sabil), but quite a number of them have been preserved. Sultan Qaitbey built at least three in the city. Of the hawd in the cemetery complex, only the rear part of the original structure survives. Its back wall is richly decorated in high-quality stone carving typical of the Sultan’s reign. It was already roofless and truncated when the famous Orientalist artist Jean-Léon Gérôme painted it in the late 1850s. Later, the Comité de Conservation des Monuments de l’Art Arabe covered the preserved part of the ruined structure with a protective roof. The building was conserved again in 2014 by ARCHiNOS Architecture with funding by the European Union.

Behind the hawd are remnants of service buildings that belonged to the once vast funerary complex, including a waterwheel that supplied the hawd. These remains were preserved by the Comité as permanent ruins.

 

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