A kasbah (Arabic: "القصبة") or Qassabah is a unique kind of medina, Islamic city, or fortress.

It was the place for the local leader to live and as a defense when the city was under attack. A kasbah has high walls which usually have no windows. Sometimes, they were built on the top of hill to make them easier to defend. Some of them were also placed near the entrance of harbors.

Having a kasbah built was a sign of wealth of some families in the city. Almost all cities had their kasbah, this building being something necessary for the city to survive. When colonization started in 1830, in northern Algeria, there were a great number of kasbahs that lasted for more than 100 years.

A Kasbah may also describe the old part of the city, in which case it has the same meaning as a medina quarter. The Spanish word "alcazaba" is a cognate naming the equivalent building in Andalusia or Moorish Spain.

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  • Kasbah — Aït Benhaddou, Marokko, Hoher Atlas Kasbah (arabisch ‏قصبة‎, DMG qaṣba) ist in der ursprünglichen Bedeutung die arabische Bezeichnung für eine Zitadelle. Diese Bezeichnung ist vor …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • kasbah — o kasba sustantivo femenino 1. Barrio antiguo de las ciudades árabes: Me gustaba pasear por la kasbah y recorrer sus zocos …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • kasbah — or Kasbah [käz′bä΄] n. alt. sp. of CASBAH …   English World dictionary

  • kasbah — (del ár. norteafricano «qaṣbah») f. Ciudadela de algunas ciudades del norte de África …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • kasbah — → casba …   Diccionario panhispánico de dudas

  • kasbah — see CASBAH (Cf. casbah) …   Etymology dictionary

  • kasbah — (also casbah) ► NOUN 1) a North African citadel. 2) the area of old, narrow streets surrounding such a citadel. ORIGIN Arabic …   English terms dictionary

  • kasbah — ● casbah ou kasbah nom féminin (arabe qaṣaba, forteresse) En Afrique du Nord, citadelle et palais d un souverain, parties hautes et fortifiées d une ville. (L un des plus beaux exemples est la casbah des Udaya à Rabat dont la porte du même nom… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Kasbah — Casbah Pour les articles homonymes, voir Casbah (homonymie). La Casbah d Alger vers 1900, elle a été fondée par les zirides …   Wikipédia en Français

  • kasbah — UK [ˈkæzbɑː] / US [ˈkæzbɑ] noun [countable] Word forms kasbah : singular kasbah plural kasbahs 1) the old central part of a North African city, often surrounding a castle and including a market 2) a castle built on a high place to defend a North… …   English dictionary

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