Masjid al Riyadh, Seiyoun of Habib Ali bin Muhammad al-Habshi.
More on him below. Now on what you see in the photo.
This is one of the few Mihrab of the mosque that is connected to the school (Ribat). The green circle says,
‘The Place of the Circle of Gathering of the Chain of Knowledge of (Qur’anic) Recitations for the Recitation of Imam Nafiq as Narrated by Qaaluun, as practiced in the City of Seiyoun.’
Speaking of which, here’s something I thoroughly enjoy listening to. A poem recited recently in a gathering in modern day Saudi Arabia, written by Habib Ali’s daughter, the scholar, Hababah Khadeeja (ra). https://youtu.be/8fTmlvGETZk
Today (Sunday) is the 20th day of the month of Rabi’ul Thani. On this day in 1333AH (1914) he passed away. This mosque is full of people. So is where he’s buried. As well as the streets all around. A similar gathering is also hosted annually elsewhere around the world, especially Solo, Indonesia.
He’s to Seiyoun like Abu Bakr al-Adni al-Aydarus is to Aden and found Habib Abu Bakr bin Abdullah al-Attas as his Shaykh.
He’s the son to the Mufti of Mecca where he spent sometime taking from Shaykh al-Islam the Sayyid Ahmad Zayni Dahlan.
He’s the Founder of Rubat Sharif, the first of its kind in Hadhramout established in 1296, where teachers of the teachers to many of the scholars you know today studied. The structure is also quite a work of architecture you must visit, with a guide.
He’s the author of Jawhar al-Maknoon wa as-Sirri al-Masoon. A collection of his poetry, second most quoted by the people of knowledge here, after the compositions by Imam al-Haddad.
He’s the composer of Mawlid Simtud Durr, one of three classic Mawlids often recited by the Ba’Alawis and the only one of those three from a Ba’Alawi. A Mawlid which he described as a ‘gift to those of later generations, for in is an exposition on the state of the Prophet (pbuh),’ a gift that reached Kenya well – during his own lifetime.
May Allah be pleased with him. And us.