About this book
The Amazing Travels of Ibn Battuta
Fatima Sharafeddine • Intelaq Ali
In 1325, when Ibn Battuta was just twenty-one, he bid farewell to his parents in Tangier, Morocco, and embarked on a pilgrimage to Mecca. It was thirty years before he returned home, having seen much of the world. In this book he recalls his amazing journey and the fascinating people, cultures and places he encountered.
After his pilgrimage to Mecca, Ibn Battuta was filled with a desire to see more of the world. He traveled extensively, throughout Islamic lands and beyond — from the Middle East to Africa to Europe to Asia.
Travelers were uncommon in those days, and when Ibn Battuta arrived in a new city he would introduce himself to the governor or religious leaders, and they in turn would provide him with gifts, a place to stay and study, and sometimes they even gave him money to continue his journey. Some of the highlights of his travels included seeing the stunning Dome of the Rock shrine in Jerusalem; witnessing the hundreds of women who gathered to pray at the mosque in Shiraz; visiting the public baths in Baghdad; and meeting the Mogul emperor of India, who made him a judge and eventually sent him to China as an ambassador.
Ibn Battuta kept a diary of his travels, and even though he lost it many times and had to recall and rewrite what he had seen, he kept a remarkable record of his years away. His adventurous spirit, keen mind and meticulous observations, as retold here by Fatima Sharafeddine, give us a remarkable picture of what it was like to be a traveler nearly seven hundred years ago.
The book is beautifully illustrated by Intelaq Mohammed Ali, with maps and travel routes forming the backdrop for many richly painted scenes.
About the Creators
Fatima Sharafeddine was born in Beirut and spent her early childhood in Sierra Leone. Her family returned to Lebanon when she was still a child, and she spent fifteen years living through the Lebanese civil war. After receiving a B.A. in Early Childhood Education, she moved to the United States, where she earned a master’s degree in education and another in Arabic literature. She has taught preschool in Houston, Texas, and Arabic language and culture classes at Rice University. She is an active member of the Lebanese section of IBBY (LBBY) and has written more than ninety books for young children. Her most recent books are the young adult novels The Servant and Ghady and Rawan.Fatima has twice been nominated for the prestigious Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award. She has also been nominated for the Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature, the Sheikh Zayed Book Award and the Marsh Award for Children’s Literature in Translation. She now divides her time between Beirut and Brussels, where she writes and translates full time.
Intelaq Mohammed Ali is an award-winning Iraqi illustrator based in Iran with thirty years’ experience in children’s culture. She has won awards for her written work and illustration, receiving the Golden Pen of Belgrade four times. Her work has also been recognized by the White Ravens catalogue (International Youth Library, Germany) and was featured in a Bologna Illustrator’s Exhibition. She was named to the IBBY Honor List for her illustrations in the original edition of Ibn Battuta, published in the United Arab Emirates. Intelaq has worked on 44 children’s books, 32 animations, 27 books for adults and 12 children’s magazines. She is an active participant in international conferences and workshops on literature and illustration. She lives in Qum, Iran.