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A. G. Gertsen

Ukrainian city in the Crimea, 35 km north-east of Sevastopol, which was the capital of the Tatar in the Crimea throughout the rule of the Giray dynasty (c. 1423–1783). It developed from an important burial ground of the Giray khans, but the Garden Palace (...


Mark Dike DeLancey

Malian mosque that was built in 1906–7 in the Sudanese style under the direction of master mason Ismaïla Traoré. Local historical traditions state that a mosque was first built on this site in the 12th century, replacing the palace of Djenné’s ruler Koi Konboro after he converted to Islam. By the turn of the 20th century the mosque was in ruins....


Jonathan M. Bloom

Building reserved for Muslim mystics belonging to a religious order. The Arabic word is of Persian origin (khān: ‘lodging’; gāh: ‘place’), but several variant forms (khanqah, khanka etc) underscore its distance from that origin. The word first appeared in the works of 10th-century geographers in reference to Manichaean institutions of teaching and evangelism in eastern Iran and Transoxiana, as well as to those of the ascetic Karrami sect of Islam. By the end of the century, however, ...



Muslim house of prayer. Islam requires no physical structure for valid prayer, which may be performed anywhere, and a minimal masjid (‘place of prostration’) may consist only of lines marked on the ground, but a building constructed especially for the purpose is preferred, in particular for congregational prayer at Friday noon, the principal weekly service. Such a building may be called a ...


Gordon Campbell

Ornamental glass shade for an oil lamp, designed to be hung in a mosque. It is usually shaped like a vase, with a bulbous body, a flared neck, a flat base, and applied glass loops from which it was suspended. The form emerged in late 13th-century Syria, and many of the finest examples come from Syria and Egypt. From the 16th century mosque lamps were made in Europe (notably Venice) and exported to the Islamic world....


Margaret Graves

From the Latin for “spoils [of war],” the term is used within the history of art and architecture to mean the re-use of earlier building materials and sculpture in later monuments. In Islamic architecture, the term spolia is most commonly, although by no means exclusively, used to refer to the re-use of Classical architectural elements, particularly stone columns and capitals, in medieval settings, but the term is equally applicable to Indian Muslims’ reuse of temple elements for their mosques. In most cases spolia were used only in the first periods of a region’s Islamization, where they may be regarded as not only a practical recycling of readily available building materials but also a representation of the triumph of Islam over earlier faiths....