Mosques• The Most notable type of building is the mosque.• Originally this was only a large open area where the faithful would gather.• The original mosque was probably the courtyard of Mohammad’s house in Medina.
Mosques• The courtyard – descendant of the basilica’s atrium and the Egyptian temple court, remains a feature of most mosques today
Mosques – Within the courtyard is usually an ablution fountain – where the worshipper symbolically washes before prayer.
Mosques• Certain characteristics are present in most mosques. – The Mihrab, or niche, indicates the Qibla, the direction of Mecca, which the faithful must face when praying.
Mosques – There is also a minbar, or pulpit, from which sermons are delivered.
Mosques – And a minaret, or tower, from which the Muezzin call the faithful to prayer. – Originally this call was made from the main roof of the mosque. – Minarets developed from Christian bell towers. Later they influenced Christian designs.
Mosques – The social obligations within the religion later led to the addition of madrassa (schools, colleges or universities) attached. – Occasionally there were and are also hospitals.
Mosques• Moslems borrowed extensively from neighbouring civilization because there was no native Hagia Sophia – converted to a architectural style mosque after the Moslem conquest of Constantinople in Mohammad’s homeland.
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul • Istanbul’s Blue Mosque is clearly based on the Hagia Sophia. • Mehmet Aga’s 17th century structure rises 77 feet to the top of its central dome.
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul• It is actually built facing Justinian’s Church, on the site of the old Imperial Palace.
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul Central dome of Istanbul’s Blue Mosque
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul Note the massive pendentive and windowed drum.
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul• The Blue Mosque is more properly known as the Sultan Ahmed Mosque.• Its more common western name comes from the wide use of blue Iznik tiles.
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul• This mosque is particularly notable for its six minarets.
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul• Stained glass creates a magical lighting effect.• However, unlike European stained glass, there are no images of people, due to Mohammad’s prohibition against them.
The Blue Mosque - Istanbul • It is the magnificent dome and adjoining half- domes that impress most. • Built a thousand years after the Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque displays more grace than its predecessor.
The Great Mosque at Samarra, Iraq• Regional variations in Islamic architecture reflect local traditions, where they exist. – The Great Mosque at Samarra has a minaret in the style of a Babylonian Ziggurat.
The Grand Mosque - Mecca• Mecca’s Grand Mosque houses Islam’s most holy site – the Kaaba, which all moslems face to pray.• It features the Kaaba in its massive courtyard.
The Grand Mosque - MeccaThis simple cube-shaped The Black stone at one ofbuilding predates Islam, but its corners is, contrary tois a site of pilgrimage for Koranic teaching,millions of moslems. venerated by many Moslems.
The Dome of the Rock - Jerusalem • This is one of Islam’s earliest mosques. • It is built on a site holy to Jews, Christians and Moslems. • Note the Byzantine inspired Central Plan.
The Dome of the Rock - Jerusalem Interior of the Dome of the Rock – where Abraham intended to sacrifice Isaac and where, for a time, Mohammad directed Moslems to face when praying – until Mecca became a Moslem city.
The Blue Mosque - Isfahan • Iranian mosques frequently used the same blue tiles as was popular in Ottoman Turkey. • However, their Iwan (great Hall) form and characteristic monumental entrances are purely Persian in design.
Mosque of Sheik Lotfallah-Isfahan• Note the ornate and characteristically Persian dome.• Note also the tendence toward horror vacui.
Mogul Architecture • The Moslem conquerors of India developed an architecture of particular grace and grandeur. • Persian domes and great gates appeared throughout northern India.
Mogul Architecture• Sometimes Islamic and Hindu features were fused – as in Akbar’s palace complex at Fatehpur Sikri.• In the pavilion to the right one sees the traditional trabeated Hindu features, merged with Persian domes.
The Taj Mahal • The most famous Mogul building of all is neither a palace or a mosque. • Rather, it is a mausoleum to house the favourite wife of a mogul emperor.
The Taj Mahal • Modelled on a mosque, the building is sited in a garden. • The glistening white marble appears almost weightless, despite the volume of masonry.
The Taj Mahal• Unlike its Persian predecessors, there is no sense of horror vacui.• Rather, the inlaid stone work has a restrained feel of balance and harmony. Floral decoration, and, especially passages from the Koran in magnificent calligraphy, decorate its marble surfaces.
The Mesquita -- Cordoba • In Spain, some of the most exuberant Moslem architecture evolved. • A prime example of this “Moorish” architecture is theMesquite (mosque) in Cordoba.
The Mesquita - Cordoba• The horseshoe- shaped double arch atop its forest of columns is easily identified.• The double arch helped to increase the vertical height of the ceiling.
The Mesquita - Cordoba • Close examination of the pillar capitals reveal that they are recycled from earlier buildings – both Roman and Germanic.
The Mesquita - Cordoba • Another prominent feature is the incredibly intricate arching found in the Mihrab – here called the Capilla de Villaviciosa.
The Mesquita - Cordoba • The vaulting is also wondrously complex, showing the Arab love of geometry
The Mesquita - Cordoba • Perhaps the strangest feature of the Mesquita today is th Christian church carved out of the middle of the original mosque. • Yet another example of cultural recycling – but strangely out of keeping with the rest of the building.
The Alhambra - Grenada • For a time Grenada was the Moorish capital of Spain. • The Alhambra palace complex contains some of the most beautiful Islamic architecture in the world.
The Alhambra - Grenada• The Court of Lions, with its slim columns and carved lace-like wall surfaces are unique.
The Alhambra - Grenada• The carved stucco of the ceiling in the Hall of the Two Sisters is unparalleled in beauty and geometrical complexity.
The Alhambra - Grenada • Of particular note is the use of water as an architectural feature. • The Patio de los Aranyanes shows the value of water to a culture with desert roots.
The Generalife - Grenada• The fountains and abundant water features serve to reduce the temperature of the palace gardens.
Mud Mosque at Djenne - Mali• One of the strangest Islamic structures in the world is the mud mosque at Djenne.
Mud Mosque at Djenne - Mali • Here the palm wood beams extend out in order to support scaffolding for the workers who must annually plaster its surface.
Islamic Architecture Today• Traditional features remain apparent, but are interpreted in novel ways.• New building materials and techniques create new and interesting possibilities. Shah Faisal Mosque, Islamabad, Pakistan.
Islamic Architecture Today Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque, in Brunei.