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Great Mosques of the Islamic Abbasid Period - Essay Example

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This work called "Great Mosques of the Islamic Abbasid Period" focuses on a basic understanding of the function and form of Mosques from the medieval period. The author outlines an exploration of the Mosques from the Abbasid period that can be made in order to better understand the importance of these great structures…
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Great Mosques of the Islamic Abbasid Period
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Download file to see previous pages In attempting to study the architecture of the Islamic world, Hillenbrand suggests that one of the primary difficulties lies in the terminology that is used. This is due to the multiplicity of purposes that each building would serve as a function within the culture. He states “Small wonder that one and the same building could be designated by a string of descriptive terms if each did in truth refer to some aspect of its regular function”.1 In examining the ways in which the buildings of the Islamic middle ages were used it is clear that those mosques were not only used for worship, madrasas were not only used for education, and neither were mausolea used just for burial. The many needs of the culture were fit into the buildings through multiple functionalities, thus the first understanding of such buildings must be made through the idea of function.
In discussing function, the first problem that can be seen in studying Islamic buildings is that there is little in the way of written information on the building of these structures. Technical renderings and information about the circumstances of how these buildings came into being are few and far between, allowing for only the buildings themselves to serve as objects of study on their construction.2 Although there is suspicion that the Islamic religious aesthetics influenced the building of Mosques during the medieval period, there is no explicit reference known or accessible to Western cultures that suggest that this is the case. Therefore, in studying the function of such buildings, one must look at the building itself to try and access this aspect and the culture in order to understand the development of needs for which the building served as a solution for cultural needs.
According to Meri and Bacharach, however, most Mosques of the medieval period were designed after the creation of a house that was built for Mohamed in Medina, which is located in Saudi Arabia. Literary evidence of the form of this house is more relevant than the archaeological as it is described as having a “large walled courtyard with entrances on three sides and two covered porticos, the larger of which functions as a sanctuary for the faithful where they may find shelter from the sun during prayer”. The original orientation of the qibla wall, the wall of the larger portico, was originally facing towards Jerusalem, and then later towards Mecca, thus providing for the importance of orientation when building a Mosque. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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Great Mosques of the Islamic Abbasid Period Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 2000 words - 1. https://studentshare.org/archaeology/1756024-give-an-account-of-the-main-mosques-of-samarra-and-al-fustat-in-the-early-abbasid-period
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Great Mosques of the Islamic Abbasid Period Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 2000 Words - 1. https://studentshare.org/archaeology/1756024-give-an-account-of-the-main-mosques-of-samarra-and-al-fustat-in-the-early-abbasid-period.
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