Baghdad in Bloom

Despite everything, Baghdad is beginning to brighten up. It might help that the city has a history of desolation and rebirth.

Said by some historians to be the site of the Garden of Eden, it was founded in AD762 by Caliph Abu Ja’far al-Mansour and became the heart of medieval Muslim civilisation, a political capital as well as an architectural wonder immortalised in stories such as the 1001 Nights.

The Mongols, among others, razed it several times, but Baghdad recovered and 19th century visitors proclaimed it the most beautiful city in the east.

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