Dhamar is situated 100 km (62 mi) to the south of Sana'a, north of Ibb, and west of Al-Bayda', 2,400–2,500 m (7,900–8,200 ft) above sea level. Its name goes back to the king of Saba' and Dhu-Raydan at 15-35 AD, whose name was Dhamar Ali Yahbir II, who is renowned for restoring the great dam of Ma’rib, and whose statue was found at the city of Al-Nakhla Al-Hamra'a ("The Red Palm"). This city is one of the archeological sites that are found near Dhamar. The city of Dhamar is the capital of the governorate, and is situated on the main road, which connects Sana’a with a number of other governorates. This city was one of the prominent Arabian and Islamic culture and scientific centers in Yemen. Its Great Mosque was built in the period of the caliph Abu Bakr. As Dhamar City had a great role in the politic and trading life in Yemen, it had an important historical role in Yemen before the lifetime of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad. The antique Yemeni engravings mentioned Dhamar city as being a very famous center of the Islamic studies and sciences, and many of the great scientists are attributed to this historical town. In past times, the people of Dhamar were known for bringing up horses; the city was an early center of horse-breeding in Arabia. The town is still known in Yemen for its numerous historical mosques and schools, which are distinguished by their characteristic architecture in harmony with the colours of its volcanic land. A volcanic field, Harras of Dhamar, extends 80 km (50 mi) to the east of the city.