Islamic architecture

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The Shah Mosque, constructed in 1629, in Isfahan, Iran.

The interior side view of the main dome of Selimiye Mosque inEdirne, Turkey.

Islamic architecture encompasses a wide range of both secular and religious styles from the foundation of Islam to the present day, influencing the design and construction of buildings and structures in Islamic culture. The principal Islamic architectural types are: the Mosque, the Tomb, the Palace and the Fort. From these four types, the vocabulary of Islamic architecture is derived and used for buildings of lesser importance such as public baths, fountains and domestic architecture.[1][2]

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1 Influences 2 History

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2.1 Rashidun Caliphate 2.2 Umayyad Caliphate

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2.2.1 Moorish architecture

2.3 Abbasid Caliphate

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3 Styles

2.3.1 Fatimid architecture 2.3.2 Mamluk architecture

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3.1 Persian architecture 3.2 Azerbaijani architecture 3.3 Turkistan (Timurid) architecture 3.4 Ottoman architecture 3.5 Indo-Pakistani architecture 3.6 Sino-Islamic architecture 3.7 Sahelian-Islamic architecture 3.8 Somali-Islamic architecture

4 Contemporary architecture

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4.1 Interpretation

5 Architecture Forms and Styles of mosques and buildings in Muslim countries

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5.1 Forms 5.2 Iwan 5.3 Sehan 5.4 Gardens 5.5 Arabesque 5.6 Calligraphy

6 Elements of Islamic style 7 References 8 External links 9 Further reading


and a central plan that resembles that of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. when new concepts and new plans were put into practice. but already bearing purely Islamic elements. The Dome of the Rock (Qubbat al-Sakhrah) in Jerusalem (691) is one of the most important buildings in all of Islamic architecture. the ―Arab plan. It featured interior vaulted spaces. although the church itself was renovated several times in the Islamic period[3]). inspired by Islam with addition of localized adaptations of the former Sassanid and Byzantine models. and were decorated to promote an image of royal luxury. reception halls. the most sacred site in the city. as Byzantine Christian. such as the great epigraphic frieze.Arabic Calligraphy on large pishtaq of the Taj Mahal A specifically recognisable Islamic architectural style emerged soon after Muhammad's time. truly became a functional type with the construction of the Umayyad Mosque. and baths.‖ with court and hypostyle prayer hall. and Khirbat alMafjar) served the caliphs as living quarters. Tunisia Religious and civic architecture were developed under the Umayyads. a circular dome. John the Baptist. Dome of the mihrab in the Great Mosque of Kairouan also known as the Mosque of Uqba. marked by a strong Byzantine influence (mosaic against a gold background. The desert palaces in Jordan and Syria (for example. . Mshatta. Thus. and the use of stylized repeating decorative arabesque patterns. or the Great Mosque of Damascus(completed in 715 by caliph AlWalid I)[4] on top of the ancient temple of Jupiter and in place of the basilica of St. in Kairouan. This building served as a point of reference for builders (and for art historians) for the birth of the Arab plan. Qasr Amra.

domes). Abu Dalaf in Iraq. first appearing in 691 with the construction of the Dome of the Rock. In this respect. The Great Mosque of Samarra. Abbasid architecture in Iraq as exemplified in the Fortress of Al-Ukhaidir (c. Distinguishing motifs of Islamic architecture have always been ordered repetition. especially for mosques and palaces. Its usage spans centuries. The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul also influenced Islamic architecture.. and then from Baghdad to Samarra. and the Rüstem Pasha Mosque.[10][11] [edit]History There are few buildings dating to the era of Prophet Muhammad. radiating structures. it dates in its present form largely from the Aghlabid period (9th century). The shift to Baghdad influenced politics. organized and interwoven with alternating sequences of niches and colonnettes. Islamic domes had been incorporated into Western architecture. combined the hypostylearchitecture of rows of columns supporting a flat base above which a huge spiraling minaret was constructed. Other major mosques built in the Abbasid Dynasty include the Mosque of Ibn Tulun in Cairo. a large courtyard surrounded by porticos and a huge hypostyle prayer hall covered on its axis by two cupolas.7756) demonstrated the "despotic and the pleasure-loving character of the dynasty" in its grand size but cramped living quarters.The Abbasid dynasty (750 A. considered as the ancestor of all the mosques in the western Islamic world. Other significant features employed as motifs include columns.[7] The Great Mosque of Samarra in Iraq. the Suleiman Mosque. As late as the 19th century. they converted thebasilica to a mosque (now a museum) and incorporated Byzantine architectural elements into their own work (e. was built for the new capital. piers and arches.[9] The role of domes in Islamic architecture has been considerable.[7] is one of the best preserved and most significant examples of early great mosques.1258[5]) witnessed the movement of the capital from Damascus to Baghdad. and recurring even up until the 17th century with the Taj Mahal. completed in 847 AD. the great mosque in Tunis.[6] The Great Mosque of Kairouan (in Tunisia). culture. When the Ottomans captured the city from the Byzantines. [edit]Rashidun Caliphate . and art.D. metric patterns. and rhythmic. fractal geometry has been a key utility.g. The Hagia Sophia also served as a model for many Ottoman mosques such as the Shehzade Mosque. Founded in 670 AD.[8] The Great Mosque of Kairouan is constituted of a massive square minaret. once the largest in the world. one example is: Juatha mosque in Saudi Arabia.

and arabesque design work. sought the first use of Islamic Forts. Moorish architecture reached its peak with the construction of the Alhambra.Main article: Rashidun Caliphate Rashidun Caliphate (632-661) was the first state to use Islamic Architecture. In particular. and gold. opening on the inside with a fountain as the house's centre piece. including the carmen. Arabisque. [edit]Moorish architecture Interior of the Mezquita. survivals such as the Bab Mardum in Toledo. medieval Spaniards used the Mudéjar style. smaller. with walls covered in glazed tile. . The mosque is noted for its striking interior arches. or the caliphal city of Medina Azahara. Kufa and Fostat). Arabic inscriptions. in the Umayyad era many new elements were included to the Islamic architecture: Minarates. Mosaic. the magnificent palace/fortress of Granada. There other. Luxury palaces. Main articles: Mudéjar and Moorish Revival Even after the completion of the Reconquista. blue. The walls are decorated with stylized foliage motifs. with its open and breezy interior spaces adorned in red. Islamic influence had a lasting impact on the architecture of Spain. [edit]Umayyad Caliphate Main article: Umayyad Caliphate Umayyad Empire (661-750). Main article: Moorish architecture Construction of the Great Mosque at Cordoba (now a cathedral known as the Mezquita) beginning in 785 CE marks the beginning of Islamic architecture in the Iberian peninsula and North Africa (see Moors). which is the typical Damascene house. Moorish architecture has its roots deeply established in the Arab tradition of architecture and design established during the era of the first Caliphate of the Umayyads in the Levant circa 660AD with its capital Damascus having very well preserved examples of fine Arab Islamic design and geometrics. Administration systems (Dar al-Imara) and the first foundation of Islamic cities (Basra.

In Cairo. Aleppo were of the largest cities ever[12]. their first congregational mosque was al- . One of the best examples of the Moors' lasting impact on Spanish architecture is the Alcázar of Seville. Break Away Kingdoms: [edit]Fatimid architecture Mosque of Al-Hakim as renovated byDawoodi Bohra. [edit]Abbasid Caliphate Main article: Abbasid Caliphate Abbasid Caliphate (750-1513). but also developed those of their own. cities such as Baghdad. the Fatimids followed Tulunid techniques and used similar materials.highly influence Islamic design. Islamic Architecture peaked in the Abbasid era. Damascus. Isometric laser scan data image of a portion of the 12th century Ayyubid Wall that borders Cairo's Al-Azhar Park Bab al-Futuh gate built by Fatimid vazirBadr al-Jamali In architecture.

other surviving Fatimid structures include the Aqmar Mosque (1125) as well as the monumental gates for Cairo's city walls commissioned by the powerful Fatimid emir and vizierBadr al-Jamali (r. played a critical role in Fatimid ceremonial and procession.Azhar mosque ("the splendid") founded along with the city (969–973). The Mosque of al-Hakim (r. became the spiritual center for Ismaili Shia. Besides elaborate funerary monuments. Cairo renovation of damaged right wing done by Dawoodi Bohra Emir Qurqumas complex . an important example of Fatimid architecture and architectural decoration. 1073–1094). Aqmar Mosque. which emphasized the religious and political role of the Fatimid caliph. 996–1013). together with its adjacent institution of higher learning (al-Azhar University). which.

the mamluk elite were often more knowledgeable in the art of buildings than many historians. became one of the wealthiest cities in the Near East and the center of artistic and intellectual activity. The architectural identity of Mamluk religious monuments stems from the major purpose that individuals erected their own memorials. Mamluk architecture is oftentimes categorized more by the reigns of the major sultan. with majestic domes. and Cairo. Religious zeal made them generous patrons of architecture and art. In Cairo. [edit]Mamluk architecture The reign of the Mamluks (1250-1517 AD) marked a breathtaking flowering of Islamic art which is most visible in old Cairo. in the words of Ibn Khaldun. the overall moderate proportions of Mamluk architecture—compared to Timurid or classical Ottoman styles—is due to the individual decisions of patrons who preferred to sponsor multiple projects.Sultan Hassan Mosque. Interestingly. courtyards. al-Mu’ayyad. This made Cairo. the funerary dome and minaret were constant leitmotifs. choices. al-Nasir Muhammad. The funerary dome of Aytimish al-Bajasi and the mausoleum dome of Qaytbay’s sons reflect the diversity . Faraj. their capital. These attributes are prominent f eatures in a Mamluk mosque’s profile and were significant in the beautification of the city skyline.[13]Since the Mamluks had both wealth and power. the funerary dome and minaret were respected as symbols of commemoration and worship. and soaring minarets spread across the city. The sponsors of the mosques of Al-Zahir Baybars. Barsbay. "the center of the universe and the garden of the world". Each building reflected the patron’s individual tastes. and name. Patrons used architecture to strengthen their religious and social roles within the community. Trade and agriculture flourished under Mamluk rule. than a specific design. While the organization of Mamluk monuments varied. Qaytbay and al-Ghawri all preferred to build several mosques in the capital rather than focusing on one colossal monument.[13] Patrons used these visual attributes to express their individuality by decorating each dome and minaret with distinct patterns. Patterns carved on domes ranged from ribs and zigzags to floral and geometric star designs. therefore adding a high degree of individuality.

minarets. Faraj (r. 1412–21). 1280–90). inlaid metalwork. In architecture. Mamluk decorative arts—especially enameled and gilded glass. In the eastern Mediterranean provinces.and detail of Mamluk architecture. both of which were endangered by legal problems relating to inheritance and confiscation of family fortunes. who were quartered in the citadel. Therefore the creativity of Mamluk builders was effectively emphasized with these leitmotifs. Mamluk textiles and carpets were prized in international trade. where they had a profound impact on local production. other important commissions by Bahri Mamluk sultans include those of al-Nasir Muhammad (1295–1304) as well as the immense and splendid complex of Hasan (begun 1356). The influence of Mamluk glassware on the Venetian glass industry is only one such example. The reign of Baybars's ally and successor. such as the Khan al-Qadi (1441). woodwork. The Burji Mamluk sultans followed the artistic traditions established by their Bahri predecessors. mausolea. Also significant was the commercial activity of pilgrims en route to Mecca and Medina. named after the location of their barracks on the Nile and the Burji Mamluks (1382–1517) of Caucasian Circassian origin. initiated the patronage of public and pious foundations that included madrasas. new aesthetic concepts and architectural solutions were created to reflect their assumed role in history. the lucrative trade in textiles between Iran and Europe helped revive the economy. Major commissions in the early Burji period in Egypt included the complexes built by Barquq (r. By 1517. and textiles—were prized around the Mediterranean as well as in Europe. Qala’un (r. and Barsbay (r. The Bahri reign defined the art and architecture of the entire Mamluk period. were erected to satisfy the surge in trade. 1422– 38). Besides Qala’un's complex. Large warehouses. Mu’ayyad Shaykh (r. 1399–1412). [13] The Mamluk utilized chiaroscuro and dappled light effects in their buildings. Other public foundations in the region . In addition. 1382–99). By 1285 the essential features of Mamluk architecture were already established in the complex of Sultan Qalawan. it took three decades for the Mamluks to create a new and distinct architecture. Expanding on the Fatimids concept of street-adjusted mosque facades. Mamluk history is divided into two periods based on different dynastic lines: the Bahri Mamluks (1250–1382) of Qipchaq Turkic origin from southern Russia. the Mamluks developed their architecture to enhance street vistas. the Ottoman conquest brought Mamluk architecture to an end without a term of decadence. endowed public and pious foundations continued to be favored. and hospitals. However. Such endowed complexes not only ensured the survival of the patron's wealth but also perpetuated his name.

construction methods reflected the finances of the state. 1468–96). Building continued under the last Mamluk sultan. In Cairo. Iran. in Isfahan. During his reign. Mamluk visual culturecontinued to inspire Ottoman and other Islamic artistic traditions. Qansuh al-Ghawri (r. . the complex of Qa’itbay in the Northern Cemetery (1472–74) is the best known and admired structure of this period. 1501– 17). 1464) as well as the Madrasa Jaqmaqiyya (Damascus. When finished in 1618. the arts thrived under the patronage of Qa’itbay (r. this mosque became the private mosque of the Safavid royalty. Though the Mamluk realm was soon incorporated into the Ottoman empire (1517). In the second half of the 15th century. who commissioned his own complex (1503–5). however. [edit]Styles [edit]Persian architecture Main article: Persian architecture The Lotfallah Mosque. and bridges. 1399–1410) and Sabun (Damascus. 1421). the greatest of the later Mamluk sultans. the shrines of Mecca and Medina were extensively restored.included the mosques of Aqbugha al-Utrush (Aleppo. Major cities were endowed with commercial buildings. religious foundations.

and art was a vital element of this competition. In Iran and the north of India. Ghaznavids. the Tahirids. The Islamic conquest of Persia in the 7th century led early Islamic architects to borrow and adopt some traditions and ways of the fallen Persian empire. strong fortifications.[14] Seljuq architecture synthesized various styles. The pinnacle of Il-Khanate architecture was reached with . Islamic architecture thus borrows heavily from Persian architecture and in many ways can be called an extension and further evolution of Persian architecture. Lodging places called khans. These changes later paved the way for Safavid architecture. such as Nishapur and Ghazni. in fits and starts. with rubble masonry.[15] The Il-Khanate period provided several innovations to dome-building that eventually enabled the Persians to construct much taller structures. generally displayed utilitarian rather than ornamental architecture. Under the Seljuqs the ―Iranian plan‖ of mosque construction appears for the first time. Great cities were built. or caravansarais. sometimes rendering precise attributions difficult. and minimal comfort. Another important architectural trend to arise in the Seljuk era is the development of mausolea including the tomb tower such as the Gunbad-i-qabus (circa 1006-7) (showcasing a Zoroastrian motif) and the domed square. for travellers and their animals. Samanids. and Ghurids struggled for power in the 10th century. Funerary architecture was also cultivated. both Iranian and Syrian. or caravanserai. and the construction of the Great Mosque of Isfahan(which would continue.Interior view of the Lotfallah Mosque. over several centuries) was initiated. an example of which is the tomb of the Samanids in the city of Bukhara (circa 943).

the dome of Masjed-e Shah (Shah Mosque) would become the tallest in the city when it was finished in 1629.[21] while Shaykh Bahai oversaw the construction projects. Reflecting the light of the sun. in 1598 initiated the reconstruction of Isfahan. which separates them from those domes created in the Christian world or the Ottoman and Mughal empires. The renaissance in Persian mosque and dome building came during the Safavid dynasty. with the Naqsh-e Jahan Square as the centerpiece of his new capital. which measures 50 m in height and 25 m in diameter. making it the 3rd largest and the tallest masonry dome ever erected. It was built as a double. Reaching 53 meters in height.colored shape would dominate the skyline of the city. blue. These domes soon numbered dozens in Isfahan.[16] The thin. Iranian architecture and city planning also reached an apogee under the Timurids. sweeter to the eye. Iran. but were later superseded by Persian designs. This very distinct style of architecture was inherited to them from the Seljuq dynasty. creating richer patterns. despite many later depredations. these domes appeared like glittering turquoise gem and could be seen from miles away by travelers following the Silk road through Persia. with 14 m spanning between the two layers. and resting on an octagonal dome chamber. In South Asia. when Shah Abbas. but it was perfected during the Safavids when they invented the haft. who was appointed head of the royal library and Master calligrapher at the Shah's court in 1598.colour style of tile burning. white and turquoise patterns on a dark. with which they covered the exterior of their domes. large arcades and arches each supported by several pillars. who for centuries had used it in their mosque background. and the distinct.the construction of theSoltaniyeh Dome (1302–1312) in Zanjan. [23] [edit]Azerbaijani architecture . elements of Hindu architecture were employed. was the colorful tiles. marked by extensive use of exterior ceramic tiles andmuqarnas vaulting within.[19] The colours that the Persians favoured where golden.rangi. in particular with the monuments of Samarkand. double-shelled dome was reinforced by arches between the layers.[20] The extensive inscription bands of calligraphy and arabesque on most of the major buildings where carefully planned and executed by Ali Reza Abbasi. as they would on the interior.[17] The tomb of Öljeitü in Soltaniyeh is one of the greatest and most impressive monuments in Iran. or seven.[18] The distinct feature of Persian domes.shelled dome. a process that enabled them to apply more colours to each tile.[22] Persian-style mosques are also characterized by their tapered brick pillars.

The Bibi-Heybat Mosque in Baku. Double domes of various shapes abound. in Samarkand. modern dayUzbekistan. At the same characteristics of this trend were the asymmetry and stone carving. An example of the first direction in the Azerbaijani Islamic architecture is the mausoleum of Yusuf. . Timurid architecture is the pinnacle of Islamic art in Central Asia. which includes famous landmarks like Palace of the Shirvanshahs. thus giving rise to the celebrated Mughal school of architecture.Azerbaijan The Islamic conquest of Persia in the 7th century also helped Islamic architecture to flourish in Azerbaijan. Spectacular and stately edifices erected by Timur and his successors inSamarkand and Herat helped to disseminate the influence of the Ilkhanid school of art in India. Timurid architecture started with the sanctuary of Ahmed Yasawi in present-day Kazakhstan and culminated in Timur's mausoleum Gure Amir in Samarkand. Axial symmetry is a characteristic of all major Timurid structures. The style is largely derived from Persian architecture.[24][25] The country became home of Nakchivan and ShirvanAbsheron architecture schools.[26] The Shirvan-Absheron school unlike Nakchivan style used stones instead of the bricks in the construction. [edit]Turkistan (Timurid) architecture Registan is the ensemble of three madrasahs. and the outsides are perfused with brilliant colors. notably the Shah-e Zendah in Samarkand and the mosque of Gowhar Shad in Mashhad. built in 1162.

[23] For almost 500 years Byzantine architecture such as the church of Hagia Sophia served as models for many of the Ottoman mosques such as the Shehzade Mosque. and achieving perfect harmony between inner and outer spaces. who lived for approximately one hundred years and designed several hundreds of buildings. Selimiye Mosque.[edit]Ottoman architecture Main article: Ottoman architecture The Sultan Ahmed Mosque in Istanbul The standard plan of Ottoman architecture was inspired in part by the example of Hagia Sophia in Constantinople/Istanbul. the Suleiman Mosque. Turkey. was transformed by the . Islamic religious architecture which until then consisted of simple buildings with extensive decorations. The most famous of Ottoman architects was (and remains) Mimar Sinan. Apprentices of Sinan later built the famousBlue Mosque in Istanbul and the Taj Mahal in India. Ilkhanid works likeOljeitu Tomb and earlier Seljuk and Anatolian Beylik monumental buildings and their own original innovations.Edirne. Persian and Syrian-Arab designs. The Ottomans mastered the technique of building vast inner spaces confined by seemingly weightless yet massive domes. The most numerous and largest of mosques exist in [Turkey]. Turkish architects implemented their own style of cupola domes. which obtained influence from Byzantine. and the Rüstem Pasha Mosque. as well as light and shadow. of which two of the most important are Süleymaniye Mosque in Istanbul and Selimiye Mosque in Edirne. built by Sinan in 1575.

It was designed by Ustad Ahmad Lauhori and his team of Mughal.Ottomans through a dynamic architectural vocabulary of vaults. semidomes and columns. represents the pinnacle of Mughal Islamic architecture in India and is one of the most recognisable buildings in the world. domes. refined elegance and a hint of heavenly transcendence. and epitomizes the beauty and grandeur of the Mughal era. built by Shah Jahan as a mausoleum for his wife. Another distinctive sub-style is the architecture of the Mughal Empire in South Asia in the 16th century and a fusion of Arabic. and Persian elements. was built in 1674 by Aurangzeb. The Taj Mahal in Agra. It is one of Lahore's best known landmarks. The mosque was transformed from being a cramped and dark chamber with arabesque-covered walls into a sanctuary of esthetic and technical balance. Ottoman and Safavid architects. The most famous examples of Mughal architecture are the series of imperial mausolea. completed in 1648 by emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal who died while giving birth to their 14th child. but is best known for the Taj Mahal. literally the 'Royal Mosque'. The extensive use of precious and . which started with the pivotal Tomb of Humayun. [edit]Indo-Pakistani architecture Main articles: Mughal architecture and Indo-Islamic architecture See also: Pakistani architecture and Indian architecture The Badshahi Masjid.

where the domeless Tomb of Jahangir is also located. and the abandoned city of Fatehpur Sikri. which is placed off center in the crypt room below the main floor. The Red Fort in Dehli and Agra Fort are huge castle-like fortified palaces. Thailandshows a great mixture between Chinese and Islamic architecture. This symmetry extended to the building of an entire mirror mosque in red sandstone to complement the Mecca-facing mosque place to the west of the main structure. Instead.semiprecious stones as inlay and the vast quantity of white marble required nearly bankrupted the empire. TheGreat Mosque of Xi'an. was built for Akbar in the late 16th century. locating in Chiang Rai province. it follows traditionalChinese architecture. China The first Chinese mosque was established in the 7th century during the Tang Dynasty in Xi'an. 26 miles west of Agra. whose current buildings date from the Ming Dynasty. Some Chinese mosques in . [edit]Sino-Islamic architecture Main article: Chinese mosques Hui people who have also migrated to the south such as this Darunaman Mosque. The Great Mosque of Xi'an. does not replicate many of the features often associated with traditional mosques. A famous example of the charbagh style of Mughal garden is the Shalimar Gardens in Lahore.[dubious – discuss] The Taj Mahal is completely symmetrical except for Shah Jahan'ssarcophagus.

which connotes a sense of grandeur. Main article: Sudano-Sahelian In West Africa.[27] An important feature in Chinese architecture is its emphasis on symmetry.[28] [edit]Sahelian-Islamic architecture The Great Mosque of Djenné in Mali is a great example of Sudano-Sahelianarchitectural style. The mosques have flared Buddhist style roofs set in walled courtyards entered through archways with miniature domes and minarets.[29] The king is said to have owned several mansions. Like Chinese scroll paintings. However in western China the mosques resemble those of the Arab World. there is a combination of eastern and western styles. curvy arches and dome shaped roofs. slender minarets. the principle underlying the garden's composition is to create enduring flow. Most mosques have certain aspects in common with each other however as with other regions Chinese Islamic architecture reflects the local architecture in its style. to let the patron wander and enjoy the garden without prescription. these are more capable of withstanding earthquakes. China is renowned for its beautiful mosques. this applies to everything from palaces to mosques. but are vulnerable to fire. but wooden structures are the most common. locals lived in domed-shaped dwellings in the king's section of the city. which tends to be as asymmetrical as possible. surrounded by a great enclosure. The roof of a typical Chinese building is curved. with tall. one of . one centered on Friday prayer. Traders lived in stone houses in a section which possessed 12 beautiful mosques (as described by al-bakri). which resemble temples. comparable with the classical orders of European of western China were more likely to incorporate minarets and domes while eastern Chinese mosques were more likely to look likepagodas. One notable exception is in the design of gardens. Islamic merchants played a vital role in the Western Sahel region since the Kingdom of Ghana. In northwest China where the Chinese Hui have built their mosques. At Kumbi Saleh. there are strict classifications of gable types. as in nature herself. Chinese buildings may be built with either red or grey bricks.

contained seven rooms. [edit]Somali-Islamic architecture Main article: Somali architecture Ruins of a mosque in Zeila. with the walls and chambers filled with sculpture and painting. and had a staircase. For centuries. (circa 1500) Almnara Tower Somalia. mosques in Somalia are some of the oldest on the entire continent. forty-two feet wide. The Sankore Mosque in Timbuktu. the only mosques in East Africa to have minarets. The peaceful introduction of Islam in the early medieval era of Somalia's history brought Islamic architectural influences from Arabia and Persia. constructed from mud on timber.which was sixty-six feet long. in fact. which stimulated a shift from drystone and other related materials in construction to coral stone.[30] Sahelian architecture initially grew from the two cities of Djenné and Timbuktu. a practice that would continue over and over again throughout the following centuries. Arba Rukun (1269). the Friday mosque of Merca (1609) and Fakr adDin (1269) were.[32] Fakr ad- . was similar in style to the Great Mosque of Djenné. One architectural feature that made Somali mosques distinct from other mosques in Africa were minarets. was two stories high. sundried bricks. Somalia. Many of the new architectural designs such as mosques were built on the ruins of older structures.[31] Concordant with the ancient presence of Islam in the Horn of Africa region. and the widespread use oflimestone in Somali architecture.

The Burj Khalifa's design is derived from the patterning systems embodied in Islamic architecture. Many modern interpretations of Islamic architecture can be found in Dubai due to the architectural boom of the Arab world. one of which bears a dated inscription. designed for pilgims on the Hajj in Saudi Arabia. Nature and flowers have often been the focal point in most traditional Islamic designs. The terminal's Bangladeshiarchitect Fazlur Khan received the Aga Khan Award for Architecture for "An Outstanding Contribution to Architecture for Muslims". Shrines to honor Somali patriarchs and matriarchs evolved from ancient Somali burial customs. [edit]Interpretation . In Southern Somalia the preferred medieval shrine architecture was the Pillar tomb style while the North predominantly built structures consisting of domes and square plans. was built with marble andcoral stone and included a compact rectangular plan with a domed mihrab axis. currently the world's tallest building. Khan was also the inventor of the tube structure design used in all supertall skyscrapers since the 1960s. Mihrab of the Şakirin Mosque in Turkey. Yet to be built is Madinat al-Hareer in Kuwait which also has modern versions of Islamic architecture in its epically tall tower. Another example of modern Islamic architecture is the King Abdulaziz International Airport's Hajj Terminal.Din. with the triple-lobed footprint of the building based on an abstracted version of the desert flower hymenocalliswhich is native to the Dubai region. which dates back to the Mogadishan Golden Age. [edit]Contemporary architecture Modern Islamic architecture has recently been taken to a new level with such buildings being erected such as the Burj Khalifa. The 13th century Al Gami Universityconsisted of a rectangular base with a large cylindrical tower architecturally unique in the Islamic world. Glazed tiles were also used in the decoration of the mihrab.

000 worshippers. Spain. These mosques are square or rectangular in plan with an . and large courtyards are intended to convey power. Foliage is a frequent motif but typically stylized or simplified for the same reason. [edit]Architecture Forms and Styles of mosques and buildings in Muslim countries Main article: mosque [edit]Forms the interior of the Mezquita in Córdoba. Arabic Calligraphy is used to enhance the interior of a building by providing quotations from the Qur'an. Human and animal forms are rarely depicted in decorative art as Allah's work is considered to be matchless. Arab-plan or hypostyle mosques are the earliest type of mosques. and the central-dome mosques of Anatolia. T-Type mosques. towering minarets. the use of grandiose forms such as large domes. A floor with room for 25. pioneered under the Umayyad Dynasty. Notable Islamic architectural types include the early Abbasid buildings. 210m high.Morocco. Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca. Furthermore. Many forms of Islamic architecture have evolved in different regions of the Islamic world. The oil-wealth of the 20th century drove a great deal of mosque construction using designs from leading modern architects.Common interpretations of Islamic architecture include the following: The concept of Allah's infinite power is evoked by designs with repeating themes which suggest infinity. Islamic architecture has been called the "architecture of the veil" because the beauty lies in the inner spaces (courtyards and rooms) which are not visible from the outside (street view).

Iwan mosques are most notable for their domed chambers and iwans. and have been used in both public and residential architecture. these mosques gradually fell out of popularity. In addition to having one large dome at the center.[37][38] Iwans were a trademark of the Sassanid architecture of Persia. later finding their way into Islamic architecture. This transition reached its peak during the Seljuki era when iwans became established as a fundamental design unit in Islamic architecture.[33] The Ottomans introduced central dome mosques in the 15th century and have a large dome centered over the prayer hall. which are vaulted spaces open out on one end. and as a result.[35] This style was heavily influenced by the Byzantinereligious architecture with its use of large central domes. an Persian term for a portal projecting from the facade of a building. and geometric designs. [36] The formal gateway to the iwan is called pishtaq. usually decorated with calligraphy bands. necessitating the use of numerouscolumns and supports. In iwan mosques. the courtyard served to accommodate the large number of worshippers during Friday prayers. glazed tilework. where prayer is not performed.enclosed courtyard and a covered prayer hall.[33] One of the most notable hypostyle mosques is the Mezquita in Córdoba. however. Most early hypostyle mosques have flat roofs on top of prayer halls. Historically. subsequently. hypostyle mosques have outer arcades so that visitors can enjoy some shade. one or more iwans face a central . walled on three sides. there are often smaller domes that exist off-center over the prayer hall or throughout the rest of the mosque. Typically. as the building is supported by over 850 columns. because of the warm Mediterranean and Middle Eastern climates. iwans open on to a central courtyard. the simplicity of the Arab plan limited the opportunities for further development.[34] Frequently. Arab-plan mosques were constructed mostly under the Umayyad and Abbasiddynasties. with one end entirely open.Spain.[33] [edit]Iwan the iwan entrance to the Taj Mahal inAgra An iwan (Persian ‫ ناويا‬derived from Pahlavi word Bān meaning house) is defined as a vaulted hall or space.

[edit]Sehan The Great Mosque of Kairouan. and often a shaded semi-open arcade. Sehans usually feature a centrally positioned ritual cleansing pool under an open domed pavilion called a howz . is found in secular and religious structures.[33] Today. [edit]Gardens Main article: Islamic Gardens The Qur'an uses the garden as an analogy for paradise and Islam came to have a significant influence on garden design. iwan mosques are seldom built. Saudi Arabia. as well as Charbagh garden of Mughal architecture. A sehan—courtyard is in within almost every mosque in Islamic architecture. 2. The traditional Islamic courtyard. Tunisia. Many iwan mosques are converted Zoroastrian fire temples where the courtyard was used to house the sacred fire. a sehan in Arabic (ar: ‫)نحص‬. 1. . and source of breezes into the structure. architectural elements. finished in 1987. located in Kairouan. A mosque courtyard is used for performing ablutions. and a 'patio' for rest or gathering. The concept ofparadise garden was commonly used the Persian gardens.[35] A notable example of a more recent four iwan design is the King Saud Mosque in Jeddah. with a largecourtyard—sehan surrounded by arcades. for cooler space with fountains and shade. The courtyards are open to the sky and surrounded on all sides by structures with halls and rooms. It is used for: the aesthetics of plants. during summer heat. and natural light. and a protected and proscribed place where the women of the house need not be covered in thehijab clothing traditionally necessary in public. water. When within a residence or other secular building is a private courtyard and walled garden. The style represents a borrowing from preIslamic Iranian architecture and has been used almost exclusively for mosques in Iran.courtyard that serves as the prayer hall.

and it is a way of decorating using beautiful. The holy book of Islam. these forms. Arabesque is used in mosques and building around the Muslim world. has played a . Furthermore. al-Qur'ān. shapes and sometimes animals (specifically birds).Qolsharif mosque in Kazan. constitute an infinite pattern that extends beyond the visible material world. To Muslims. Calligraphy has arguably become the most venerated form of Islamic art because it provides a link between the languages of the Muslims with the religion of Islam. the arabesque is an elaborate application of repeating geometric forms that often echo the forms of plants. the Islamic Arabesque artist conveys a definite spirituality without the iconography of Christian art. Contemporary artists in the Islamic world draw on the heritage of calligraphy to use calligraphic inscriptions or abstractions in their work. Instead of recalling something related to the reality of the spoken word. [edit]Arabesque Main article: Arabesque An element of Islamic art usually found decorating the walls and window screens of mosques and Muslim homes and buildings. The choice of which geometric forms are to be used and how they are to be formatted is based upon the Islamic view of the world. they in fact symbolize the infinite. embellishing and repetitive Islamic art instead of using pictures of humans and animals (which is forbidden Haram in Islam). [edit]Calligraphy Main article: Islamic calligraphy Arabic calligraphy is associated with geometric Islamic art (the Arabesque) on the walls and ceilings of mosques as well as on the page. and therefore uncentralized.[39] To many in the Islamic world. nature of the creation of the one God ("Allah" in Arabic). calligraphy for the Muslim is a visible expression of spiritual concepts. taken together.

as seen in the Great Mosque of Damascus. [edit]Elements of Islamic style Islamic architecture may be identified with the following design elements. The minaret of the Great Mosque of Kairouan in Tunisia is considered as the oldest surviving minaret in the world. Proverbs and complete passages from the Qur'an are still active sources for Islamic calligraphy.  Minarets or towers (these were originally used as torch-lit watchtowers. [40] It has the shape of a square massive tower of three superimposed sections. situated in Kairouan. meaning "light").vital role in the development of the Arabic language. [40] . Minaret of the Great Mosque of Kairouanregarded as the oldest surviving minaret in the world. al-Azhar Street. Tunisia. which were inherited from the first mosque built byr hall (originally a feature of the Masjid al-Nabawi). Plan view of Bab al-Barqiyya alongAyyubid Wall. the Fatimid-era Bab al-Barqiyya fortified gate was constructed with interlocking volumes that surrounded the entrant in such a way as to provide greater security and control than typical city wall gates. Located close to one of Cairo's main modern traffic arteries. and by extension. calligraphy in the Arabic alphabet. hence the derivation of the word from the Arabic nur.

(Compare mocárabe. human and animal representation was indeed present. usually decorated with calligraphy bands. a vaulted hall or space.   Central fountains used for ablutions (once used as a wudu area for Muslims). The use of muqarnas. minarets and portals.[37][38]    Iwans to intermediate between different pavilions. usually the main prayer hall of a mosque.  Focus both on the interior space of a building and the exterior [edit] [citation needed] http://en. a unique Arabic/Islamic space-enclosing system. A four-iwan plan. The use of geometric shapes and repetitive art (arabesque). paler sandstone and grey stones are preferred among Arab buildings. Note that in secular architecture. with one end entirely open. glazed tilework. Compare the Registan complex of Uzbekistan to the Al-Azhar University of Cairo. Used at theAlhambra.) Modern muqarnas designs [1]  The use of decorative Islamic calligraphy instead of pictures which were haram (forbidden) in mosque . for the decoration of domes. walled on three sides.wikipedia. Pishtaq is the formal gateway to the iwan. with three subordinate halls and one principal one that faces toward Mecca  Mihrab or prayer niche on an inside wall indicating the direction to Mecca. and geometric designs.   Domes and Cupolas. a Persian term for a portal projecting from the facade of a building. if the style is Persian or Indian (Mughal). The use of bright color. This may have been derived from previous uses of niches for the setting of the Torah scrolls in Jewish synagogues (see Torah ark) or the haikal of Coptic churches.

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