| Share
 

An Najaf

An Najaf (än näˈjäf) [key], city (1987 pop. 309,010), S central Iraq, on a lake near the Euphrates River. The city, one of Shi'a Islam's holiest, is also called Mashad Ali, after the tomb (in a mosque) of Ali, son-in-law of Muhammad the Prophet. The tomb is an object of pilgrimage by Shiite Muslims and a starting point for the pilgrimage to Mecca. An Najaf also is an important Shiite theological and educational center; Iraq's senior Shiite clergy reside there. The city was the center of fighting between U.S. forces and Shiite insurgents in 2004.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on Najaf from Infoplease:

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Iraq Political Geography


Premium Partner Content
HighBeam Research
Documents Images and Maps Reference
(from Newspapers, Magazines, Journals, Newswires, Transcripts and Books)

Research our extensive archive of more than 80 million articles from 6,500 publications.

Additional search results provided by HighBeam Research, LLC. © Copyright 2005. All rights reserved.

24 X 7

Private Tutor

Click Here for Details
24 x 7 Tutor Availability
Unlimited Online Tutoring
1-on-1 Tutoring