Friday, September 4, 2009

Bibi-Khanym Mosque

The Bibi-Khanym Mosque (also spelled Bibi-Khanom and Bibi-Kanyum) is located in Samarkund, Uzbekistan. It is one of the largest and most complex mosques in this area. Construction of the mosque began in the 14th century and continued throughout the 20th century. It was built in Samarkund due to the fact that it was the capital of Timur at the time. The construction began approximately in 1399. A renovation of the mosque started early in the 20th century in order to save the foundation after this beautiful architecture was damaged by an earthquake around 1906. The picture below is an early color photograph of the earthquake damage.

The mosque is appealing because of the very intricate tile designs all over the exterior of the building. The mosque is made up of many buildings and a few domed towers. The tile around the tops of the domes are in a pattern of Islamic script. The bottom of the buildings are sparse decorated with bright blue and green tiles and as your eyes ascend to the top of the building the designs become more dominant and cover most of the dome. It brings up the same idea about the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem; the closer the building grows to heaven the beautiful and outstanding the appearance becomes to represent heaven.
The inside view of one of the domes.

The Bibi-Khanym Mosque shares the same appearance at the entrance as the Great Congregational Mosque in Isfahan. They both have a pointed arch way over the door, as well as, the same symmetry with vertical pillars to the right and left. The yard of the mosque is a huge bazaar, where merchants trade and buy goods. A website that features a video of the Bibi-Khanym Mosque that contains many different angles and views of all parts of the mosque;

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