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Madafas, Architecture of hospitality of a Jordanian Village

Umm Qais: Madafat: Architecture of hospitality of a Jordanian Village.


Madafas are gathering places where hosting of guests and other public family events took place. They were located in a prominent part of the house (or Hosh) and the honour of hosting the Madafa was given to the family or clan leader. Madafas had additional purposes such as offering of help to different members of the clan or society, in addition of providing a place to solve problems and disputes within the community.


The Mukhtar of Umm Qais towards the end of the 19thcentury was Sheikh Faleh Falah al Rousan who was a prominent social figure and a significant merchant and farmer in Umm Qais. He had two madafas; an indoor Madafa for winter and a second outdoor Madafa for summer

[plan of site showing summer and winter Madafas]

Several madafas flourished within the Hara al Fouqa belonging to different families such as the madafas of Mohammad Suileman Malkawi, Mohammad al Husban. Other significant members of the community also, and later on, established their own madafas such as Hussein Abu Hasan al Rousan, Abdullah al Lafi al Rousan, Ali Nawashi al Masri and Mohammad Nawashi al Masri.

[plan of locations of madafat at Umm Qays Village]

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