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Facts About Baghdad For Kids


Baghdad is the largest city in Iraq, the second largest city in the Arab World (after Cairo, Egypt), and the second largest city in Western Asia (after Tehran, Iran). Located along the Tigris River, the city was founded in the 8th century and became the capital of the Abbasid Caliphate.

  • This in addition to housing several key academic institutions garnered the city a worldwide reputation as the “Centre of Learning”.
  • Throughout the High Middle Ages, Baghdad was considered to be the largest city in the world with an estimated population of 1,200,000 people.
  • When the Abbasid caliph al-Mansur founded a completely new city for his capital, he chose the name Madinat al-Salaam or “City of Peace”.
  • The most widely accepted among these is that the name is a Middle Persian compound of Bag “god” + dād “given”, translating to “God-given” or “God’s gift”, from which comes Modern Persian Baɣdād.
  • On 30 July 762 the caliph Al Mansur commissioned the construction of the city and it was built under the supervision of the Barmakids.
  • The Sasanian city of Gur in Fars, built 500 years before Baghdad, is nearly identical in its general circular design, radiating avenues, and the government buildings and temples at the centre of the city.
  • The two designers who were hired by Al-Mansur to plan the city’s design were Naubakht, a Zoroastrian who also determined that the date of the foundation of the city would be astrologically auspicious, and Mashallah, a Jew from Khorasan, Iran.
  • The Abbasids and the round city The Abbasid Caliphate was based on their being the descendants of the uncle of Muhammad and being part of the Quraysh tribe.
  • They used Shi’a resentment, Khorasanian movement, and appeals to the ambitions and traditions of the newly conquered Persian aristocracy to overthrow the Umayyads.
  • Not long before the arrival of the Saljuqs in Baghdad, al-Basasiri petitioned to the Fatimid Imam-Caliph al-Mustansir to support him in conquering Baghdad on the Ismaili Imam’s behalf.
  • Aside from ethnically Arab Iraqis, the city was also home to a substantial ancient Jewish community, which comprised over a quarter of the city’s population (this proportion would grow in later years).
  • In 1991 and 2003, the Gulf War and the 2003 invasion of Iraqcaused significant damage to Baghdad’s transportation, power, and sanitary infrastructure as the US-led coalition forces launched massive aerial assaults in the city in the two wars.
  • Baghdad has a subtropical arid climate and is, in terms of maximum temperatures, one of the hottest cities in the world.
  • The process initially focused on the election of neighborhood councils in the official neighborhoods, elected by neighborhood caucuses.
  • Each neighborhood process ultimately ended with a final meeting where candidates for the new neighborhood councils identified themselves and asked their neighbors to vote for them.
  • Once all 88 neighborhood councils were in place, each neighborhood council elected representatives from among their members to serve on one of the city’s nine district councils.
  • As before, the representatives to the Provincial Council were elected by their peers from the lower councils in numbers proportional to the population of the districts they represent.