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Medieval Arab city Fes: It’s a kind of magic

Arriving in Fes, the only medieval Arab city that is still absolutely intact, is like being catapulted back in time. Tahir Shah is spellbound

Abdul-Lateef sits in the shade at the front of his shop, a glint in his eye and a week’s growth of beard on his cheeks. With care, he weighs out half a dozen dried chameleons, wraps them in a twist of newspaper, and passes the packet to a young woman dressed in black.

“She will give birth to a handsome boy child,” says the shopkeeper when the woman has gone.

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