Earthquake Damage to the Tinmel Mosque, Morocco
On 8 September 2023, a magnitude 6.8 earthquake caused extensive damage to the Tinmel Mosque in Morocco. On 13 September 2023, satellite imagery analysis conducted by the Smithsonian Cultural Rescue Initiative (SCRI), Penn Cultural Heritage Center (PennCHC), and Cultural Heritage Monitoring Lab at the Virginia Museum of Natural History (CHML) confirmed this damage to the Tinmel Mosque.
Analysis of available high-resolution satellite imagery indicates that the four exterior walls and the interior of the Mosque were severely damaged by the earthquake. Significant collapse debris are visible. The Tinmel Mosque was established in the 12th century AD in the Tizi-n-Test region of the High Atlas Mountains, south of Marrakech, and served as a key example of the Almohad architectural style. The Mosque has played a significant role in the cultural identity of the region and was added to the list of Tentative UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1995.
RECOMMENDED CITATION: Hanson, K., Bender, T. J. P., Daniels, B. I., Welsh, W., Bassett, H., Gunter-Bassett, M., Fitzgerald, K., Maher, A., and Wegener, C. (2023). “Rapid Report: Earthquake Damage to the Tinmel Mosque, Morocco.” Smithsonian Institution, Smithsonian Cultural Rescue Initiative; University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Penn Cultural Heritage Center; and Virginia Museum of Natural History, Cultural Heritage Monitoring Lab.