National Geographic : 1925 Mar
ACROSS FRENCH AND SPANISH MOROCCO 345 A SHOPPING STREET IN 'fIlE HEART OF OLD FEZ The roof, designed to minimize the severity of the sun's rays, is a lattice of reeds. The booths of the merchants are cubby-hole bazaars on each side of the narrow thoroughfare. On some of the streets of Fez horses and mules are allowed, on others only pedestrians. This is one of the former, as shown by the well-to-do individual in the distance, who is mounted. e11ter the mosques now open to them in Algeria, they may see in the meder as the beau ti f ul 1\10slem architecture at its best. In Fez there are four of these old build- ings dating f rom the fourteenth cen tu ry, and a fifth, of a later period, which is also a jewel. For nearly I,200 yea r s 1\Ioslem art, over a vast territory stretching from the Far East to 1\10rocco and 100rish Spain, has heen es entially the same-simple of outline, with decora- tions in complicated geometrical design, since the 10slem faith is prejudiced against the representation of any form of life. All Moroccan mosques, medersas, homes, s hop s, and cemeteries look more or less alike, forming an incomparable set- ting for ape 0 pIe whose dress, regard- less of station, is alike in form and coloring. I t is, I think, this whiteness and same- ness which give to the cities of Morocco, no matterhow thronged their streets, an air of quietude. Only the motion picture can bring be- fore one the never-ceasing human tide 'which flows by day through the narrow, crowded streets of Fez. The 1\loors, who number, in the French and Spanish zones, about 6,000,000, are a mixed race \vith a Berber base. This base we shall find, if we dig deep enough, to be white, allied to a prehistoric race of southwestern Eu- rope. There are many admixtures- Arab, Jewish, Turkish, European. And there is also 1\egro slave blood from the far south. Photograph from Joseph Bouhsira Some of the aristocratic types are strik- ing-men of white skin and noble mien, whose flowing robes lend a certain grace and dignity. \Ve pass a rich man astride a white mule. His high Ioorish saddle looks uncomfortable, but the bright-red saddle- cloth and woven bridle are most pleasing to the eye. Balek! Balek! ("Look out! Take care !") shouts the poor man on foot, as he beats his wretched little donkey into the thick of the cro\vd.