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al-madînatu l-munawwara

City in Saudi Arabia with 500,000 inhabitants. Situated in Hijaz, in western Saudi Arabia. This city was originally called Yathrib. When Muhammad (PBUH) and the Muslim community fled Makkah in 622, Yathrib was chosen as the new headquarter, 330 km north of Makkah. From this place Muhammad's (PBUH) community grew in strength, size and importance. After 8 years they had grown strong enough to make Makkah give in.

Muhammad (PBUH) did visit Makkah after this, but he died in 632 in Yathrib, or the city of the Prophet as it came to be called, Madinatu n-Nabiyy. Muhammad (PBUH) was buried here, and a mosque was built round his grave. His daughter Fatima and the Caliph Omar, the second Caliph, was also buried here. Madinah was the capital of the Muslim community until 661.

Soon after the death of Muhammad (PBUH), people started coming to Madinah, to see his grave. Despite the objections of the Ulama, this tradition has grown in importance, and today all those who has the means, try to visit Madinah after doing the Haj in Makkah. 

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