Early Islamic era
|Minaret and entrance of 10th century Great Mosque of Nablus, 1908|
According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS), in 1997, 44,926 were enrolled in schools (41.2% in primary school, 36.2% in secondary school, and 22.6% in high school). About 19.8% of high school students received bachelor diplomas or higher diplomas. In 2006, there were 234 schools and 93,925 students in theNablus Governorate; 196 schools are run the by Education Ministry of the Palestinian National Authority, 14 by theUnited Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and 24 are private schools.
Nablus is also home to an-Najah National University, the largest Palestinian university in the West Bank. Founded in 1918 by the an-Najah Nabulsi School, it became a college in 1941 and a university in 1977. An-Najah was closed down by Israeli authorities during the First Intifada, but reopened in 1991. Today, the university has three campuses in Nablus with over 16,500 students and 300 professors. The university's faculties include seven in thehumanities and nine in the sciences.
Culture and Arts
Nablus and its culture enjoy a certain renown throughout the Palestinian Territories and the Arab world with significant and unique contributions to Palestinian culture, cuisine and costume. Nabulsi, meaning "from Nablus", is used to describe items such as handicrafts (e.g. Nabulsi soap) and food products (e.g. Nabulsi cheese) that are made in Nablus or in the traditional Nablus style.
|Nablus costume was of a distinctive style that employed colorful combinations of various fabrics. Due to its position as important trade center with a flourishing souk ("market"), in late 19th century, there was a large choice of fabrics available in the city, from Damascus and Aleppo silk to Manchester cottons and calicos. Similar in construction to the garments worn in theGalilee, both long and short Turkish style jackets were worn over the thob ("robe"). For daily wear, thobs were often made of white cotton or linen, with a preference for winged sleeves. In the summer, costumes often incorporated interwoven striped bands of red, green and yellow on the front and back, with appliqué and braidwork popularly decorating the qabbeh ("square chest piece")|
|Nablus is one of the Palestinian cities that sustained elite classes, fostering the development of a culture of "high cuisine", such as that of Damascus or Baghdad. The city is home to a number of food products well known throughout the Levant, the Arab world and the former provinces of the Ottoman Empire.
|Nabulsi soap or sabon nabulsi is a type of castile soap produced only in Nablus and made of three primary ingredients: virgin olive oil, water, and a sodium compound. Since the 10th century, Nabulsi soap has enjoyed a reputation for being a fine product, and has been exported across the Arab world and to Europe.Though the number of soap factories decreased from a peak of thirty in the 19th century to only two today, efforts to preserve this important part of Palestinian and Nabulsi cultural heritage continue.[|