1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Al Kasr al Kebir

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AL KASR AL KEBIR (“the great castle,” in Span. Alcazar Kebir, in Port. Alcaçer Quibir), a town of Morocco, on the river Lekkus, 80 m. N.W. of Fez. Pop. about 10,000. Its mud and pantile dwellings are here and there relieved by a mosque tower, but the aspect of the town is far from inviting. It is frequently flooded in winter and in consequence fever is prevalent. The weekly market, held on Sundays in the centre of the town, gives to the place an appearance of bustle. A vice-governor is appointed for the town by the basha of Laraiche, one for the country round by the sultan of Morocco, a condition which causes much confusion on market-days. Al Kasr al Kebir was built, according to Leo Africanus, by Yakub el Mansur (1186–1199). Not far from the town, by the banks of the river Makhazan, is the site of the battle fought in 1578 between Dom Sebastian, king of Portugal, and the Moors under Abd el Malek, in which the Moors were victorious, though both kings perished, as well as the deposed Mahommed XI., who had called in the Portuguese to his aid against Abd el Malek.