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 Introduction:-
The Mosque of Uqba also known as the Great Mosque of
Kairouan, is an early example of a hypostyle mosque
that also reflects how pre-Islamic and eastern Islamic
art and motifs were incorporated into the religious
architecture of Islamic North Africa.
 Founder:-
Kairouan flourished under the Aghlabid dynasty in the
9th century. The mosque, as it stands today, was built
by Ziyadat Allah, between 817 and 838 AD.
 Location:-
Located in the centre of Tunisia in a plain at an
almost equal distance from the sea and the mountain,
Kairouan is the most ancient Arabo-Muslim base of
the Maghreb,located in the historic walled district of
the Medina.
Kairouan bears unique witness to the first centuries
of this civilisation and its architectural and urban
development.
The Aghlabids were an Arab
dynasty of emirs from Banu
Tamim, who ruled Ifriqiya,
nominally on behalf of the
Abbasid Caliph, for about a
century, until overthrown by the
new power of the Fatimids. The
decline of the dynasty began
after the attack by the Tulunids
of Egypt.
 History:-
o The Great Mosque at Kairouan inherited the
site of the first Muslim oratory in the Maghreb,
which was built by ‘Uqba ibn Nafi in 50 (670).
o Renovations was conducted by Hasan ibn
Nu'man in 84 (703).
o Enlargements of the mosque done under the
governor Bichr ibn Safwan (103–9 / 722–8).
o Another renovation done under Yazid ibn
Hatim in 155 (772).
o Finally, the mosque was totally rebuilt by the
Aghlabid prince Ziyadat Allah I in 221 (836),
when it assumed its current dimensions.
For centuries, the Great Mosque of Kairouan
has served as a pilgrimage destination
for North Africans not able to make the
long trip to Mecca. According to popular
belief, seven trips to Kairouan was worth
one hajj to Mecca.
 Planing of the mosque:-
o
The exterior of the Great Mosque of Kairouan, with
buttressed walls, is in the typically austere Aghlabid
design.
o There are several gates with porches.
o The grand minaret indicates the buildings
significance and the mosque becomes far more
impressive upon entering.
o Muslims can enter the mosque through nine different
gates.
o non-Muslim visitors use the main gate on rue Oqba
ibn Nafaa .
o The enclosure of the Great Mosque of Kairouan is
pierced by nine gates (six opening on the courtyard,
two opening on the prayer hall and a ninth allows
access to the maqsura).
o The mosque is slightly irregular in shape, the
complex measures about 70 by 125 meters and is
aligned northwest-southeast.
o It consists of an arcaded rectangular courtyard with
the prayer hall to its southeast, preceded by a
seventeen-bay portico.
Plan of the mosque
 Architectural elements of the mosque:-
o Courtyard:-
o The courtyard is a vast trapezoidal area whose interior
dimensions are approximately 67 by 52 meters.[40][41] It is
surrounded on all its four sides by a portico with double rows of
arches, opened by slightly horseshoe arches supported
bycolumns in various marbles, in granite or in porphyry.
o Ribbed dome:-
The portico on the south side of the courtyard, near the prayer
hall, includes in its middle a large dressed stone pointed
horseshoe arch which rests on ancient columns of white veined
marble with Corinthian capitals. This porch of seven meters high
is topped with a square base upon which rests a semi-spherical
ribbed dome .
The intermediary area, the dodecagonal drum of the dome, is
pierced by sixteen small rectangular windows set into rounded
niches.
o Minaret :-
The minaret perhaps inspired by Roman lighthouses, is the
massive square minaret is about which is 32 meters tall. It is
located inside the enclosure and does not have direct access
from the outside .it was placed just off the mihrab axis. The
interior includes a staircase of 129 steps, which gives access to
the terraces and the first tier of the minaret. The door giving
access to the minaret is framed by a lintel and jambs made of
recycled carved friezes of antique origin.
o Mihraab:-
The central aisle leads to the 9th-
century tiled mihrab (niche indicating
the direction of Mecca) on the south
side of the mosque. The lower portion
of the mihrab is decorated with
openwork marble panels in floral and
geometric vine designs. It is covered
by a painted wooden half-dome with
foliate scrolls and five-lobed leaves.
The niche has 28 panels of pierced or
chased marble.
o Minbar:-
The minbar, also from the 3rd
century AH (9th AD), is the oldest
Muslim preacher's chair that we
possess. It is made of more than 300
pieces of Indian teak. The wood-
carving combines Byzantine and
Mesopotamian influences The minbar,
situated on the right of the mihrab, is
used by the imam during the Friday
or Eids sermons, is a staircase-
shaped pulpit with an upper seat,
reached by eleven steps, and
measuring 3.93 meters length to 3.31
meters in height.
o Maqsura:-
The maqsura, another precious wooden piece, has
rich calligraphy in flowery kufic. The maqsura, located
near the minbar, consists of a fence bounding a private
enclosure that allows the sovereign and his senior
officials to follow the solemn prayer of Friday without
mingling with the faithful.
Inside the prayer hall:-
The prayer hall is located on the southern side of
the courtyard . A portico with double row of arches
precede the spacious prayer hall, which takes the shape
of a rectangle of 70.6 meters in width and 37.5 meters
depth. The hypostyle hall is divided into 17 aisles of eight
bays, the central nave is wider, as well as the bay along
the wall of the qibla. In the prayer hall, the 414 columns
of marble, granite or porphyry that supports the
horseshoe arches. In the wooden roof of the prayer hall
some fine beams have been preserved, in spite of
successive restorations in the AH 8th and 9th centuries
.The capitals resting on the column shafts offer a wide
variety of shapes and styles
(Corinthian, Ionic, Composite, etc)
 Special feature of the
mosque:-
The impluviam square basin is the
sunken part provided that focuses rain
water collection .It is an ingenious
system that ensures the capture (with
the slightly sloping surface of the
courtyard) then filtering storm water at
a central basin furnished with
horseshoe arches sculpted in white
marble.
This is one of the most
important mosques in Tunisia, situated
in the UNESCO World Heritage town
of Kairouan.
The Great Mosque represents one of the
most prestigious
places of worship in Islam.
tunisiaarchitecture-161115111327.pdf architecture mur

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tunisiaarchitecture-161115111327.pdf architecture mur

  • 1.
  • 2.  Introduction:- The Mosque of Uqba also known as the Great Mosque of Kairouan, is an early example of a hypostyle mosque that also reflects how pre-Islamic and eastern Islamic art and motifs were incorporated into the religious architecture of Islamic North Africa.  Founder:- Kairouan flourished under the Aghlabid dynasty in the 9th century. The mosque, as it stands today, was built by Ziyadat Allah, between 817 and 838 AD.  Location:- Located in the centre of Tunisia in a plain at an almost equal distance from the sea and the mountain, Kairouan is the most ancient Arabo-Muslim base of the Maghreb,located in the historic walled district of the Medina. Kairouan bears unique witness to the first centuries of this civilisation and its architectural and urban development. The Aghlabids were an Arab dynasty of emirs from Banu Tamim, who ruled Ifriqiya, nominally on behalf of the Abbasid Caliph, for about a century, until overthrown by the new power of the Fatimids. The decline of the dynasty began after the attack by the Tulunids of Egypt.
  • 3.  History:- o The Great Mosque at Kairouan inherited the site of the first Muslim oratory in the Maghreb, which was built by ‘Uqba ibn Nafi in 50 (670). o Renovations was conducted by Hasan ibn Nu'man in 84 (703). o Enlargements of the mosque done under the governor Bichr ibn Safwan (103–9 / 722–8). o Another renovation done under Yazid ibn Hatim in 155 (772). o Finally, the mosque was totally rebuilt by the Aghlabid prince Ziyadat Allah I in 221 (836), when it assumed its current dimensions. For centuries, the Great Mosque of Kairouan has served as a pilgrimage destination for North Africans not able to make the long trip to Mecca. According to popular belief, seven trips to Kairouan was worth one hajj to Mecca.
  • 4.  Planing of the mosque:- o The exterior of the Great Mosque of Kairouan, with buttressed walls, is in the typically austere Aghlabid design. o There are several gates with porches. o The grand minaret indicates the buildings significance and the mosque becomes far more impressive upon entering. o Muslims can enter the mosque through nine different gates. o non-Muslim visitors use the main gate on rue Oqba ibn Nafaa . o The enclosure of the Great Mosque of Kairouan is pierced by nine gates (six opening on the courtyard, two opening on the prayer hall and a ninth allows access to the maqsura). o The mosque is slightly irregular in shape, the complex measures about 70 by 125 meters and is aligned northwest-southeast. o It consists of an arcaded rectangular courtyard with the prayer hall to its southeast, preceded by a seventeen-bay portico.
  • 5. Plan of the mosque
  • 6.  Architectural elements of the mosque:- o Courtyard:- o The courtyard is a vast trapezoidal area whose interior dimensions are approximately 67 by 52 meters.[40][41] It is surrounded on all its four sides by a portico with double rows of arches, opened by slightly horseshoe arches supported bycolumns in various marbles, in granite or in porphyry. o Ribbed dome:- The portico on the south side of the courtyard, near the prayer hall, includes in its middle a large dressed stone pointed horseshoe arch which rests on ancient columns of white veined marble with Corinthian capitals. This porch of seven meters high is topped with a square base upon which rests a semi-spherical ribbed dome . The intermediary area, the dodecagonal drum of the dome, is pierced by sixteen small rectangular windows set into rounded niches. o Minaret :- The minaret perhaps inspired by Roman lighthouses, is the massive square minaret is about which is 32 meters tall. It is located inside the enclosure and does not have direct access from the outside .it was placed just off the mihrab axis. The interior includes a staircase of 129 steps, which gives access to the terraces and the first tier of the minaret. The door giving access to the minaret is framed by a lintel and jambs made of recycled carved friezes of antique origin.
  • 7. o Mihraab:- The central aisle leads to the 9th- century tiled mihrab (niche indicating the direction of Mecca) on the south side of the mosque. The lower portion of the mihrab is decorated with openwork marble panels in floral and geometric vine designs. It is covered by a painted wooden half-dome with foliate scrolls and five-lobed leaves. The niche has 28 panels of pierced or chased marble. o Minbar:- The minbar, also from the 3rd century AH (9th AD), is the oldest Muslim preacher's chair that we possess. It is made of more than 300 pieces of Indian teak. The wood- carving combines Byzantine and Mesopotamian influences The minbar, situated on the right of the mihrab, is used by the imam during the Friday or Eids sermons, is a staircase- shaped pulpit with an upper seat, reached by eleven steps, and measuring 3.93 meters length to 3.31 meters in height.
  • 8. o Maqsura:- The maqsura, another precious wooden piece, has rich calligraphy in flowery kufic. The maqsura, located near the minbar, consists of a fence bounding a private enclosure that allows the sovereign and his senior officials to follow the solemn prayer of Friday without mingling with the faithful. Inside the prayer hall:- The prayer hall is located on the southern side of the courtyard . A portico with double row of arches precede the spacious prayer hall, which takes the shape of a rectangle of 70.6 meters in width and 37.5 meters depth. The hypostyle hall is divided into 17 aisles of eight bays, the central nave is wider, as well as the bay along the wall of the qibla. In the prayer hall, the 414 columns of marble, granite or porphyry that supports the horseshoe arches. In the wooden roof of the prayer hall some fine beams have been preserved, in spite of successive restorations in the AH 8th and 9th centuries .The capitals resting on the column shafts offer a wide variety of shapes and styles (Corinthian, Ionic, Composite, etc)
  • 9.
  • 10.  Special feature of the mosque:- The impluviam square basin is the sunken part provided that focuses rain water collection .It is an ingenious system that ensures the capture (with the slightly sloping surface of the courtyard) then filtering storm water at a central basin furnished with horseshoe arches sculpted in white marble. This is one of the most important mosques in Tunisia, situated in the UNESCO World Heritage town of Kairouan. The Great Mosque represents one of the most prestigious places of worship in Islam.