The land upon which the city is founded and much of its surrounding territory came under the domination of the Roman empire in 117 A.D. (see History of Morocco). The original community from which Meknes can be traced was an 8th century Kasbah, or fortress. A Berber tribe called the Miknasa settled there in the 10th century, and a town consequently grew around the fortress. Meknes saw its golden age as the imperial capital of Moulay Ismail following his accession to the Sultanate of Morocco.
Neighboring cities: Azrou (cedar region, fish growing, famous "College d'Azrou" where many members of the post-independence elite came from) and Ifrane (Al_Akhawayn_University). Volubilis (Oualili) is about half an hour to the north, a ruined Roman town.