The Qarawiyyin Mosque, built in 245/859. contained three libraries.
The Abu Inan Library, founded by Sultan al-Mutawakkil Abu Inan, was opened in 750/1349. The sultan appointed a librarian to be in charge of the library.
There is very little information on an earlier library established in the mosque by Sultan Abu Yusuf Yaqub.
King Ahmad al Manaur al-Dhahabi founded the Mansuriya Library in 996/1587. Although most of the books came from his own library, many others had been a part of Abu Inan’s collection.
The Yusofiya Library at the Mosque of Ali Ibn Yusuf was founded in 1117/1700 by Mulai Ismail. It contained Muslim theology, philology, biography, philosophy, literature, arithmetic, and medicine.
The library at the Grand Mosque contained many rare manuscripts. It did not suffer from the Spanish occupation in 1276/1859 – 1277/1860. The library at the Mosque of Shaikh Baraka also held some rare manuacripts.
The mosque contained a large collection of manuscripts. It was used as the city’s main public library.
(This page was updated in December 2012.)