Islamic heritage: Shah Abbas Mosque [VIDEO]

September 20, 2021 11:50 am (UTC + 04:00 am)


By Laman Ismayilova

Shah Abbas Mosque is considered one of the most famous architectural monuments not only in Ganja, but in all of Azerbaijan.

The largest mosque in Gandja dates back to the 17th century. Shah Abbas Mosque was designed by Sheikh Bahauddin, a descendant of the eminent poet and thinker Nizami Ganjavi.

Sheikh Bahauddin was also known as a naturalist and a philosopher. He was one of the first to formulate the theory of atoms.

Shah Abbas Mosque is in the form of a red brick cube, traditional for Ganja. The thickness of the walls reaches three meters.

The mosque consists of a prayer hall, divided into two halves (for men and women) by a large screen, and small adjoining rooms.

The windows of the mosque are decorated with patterned latticework – shebeke.

The mosque has a unique minbar made of different types of wood but without a single nail. It is decorated with picturesque miniatures. The mosque is crowned with a dome with a diameter of 17 meters.

Later, Hamam Chokyak was built near the mosque, known as one of the best caravanserais in Azerbaijan.

There used to be a market square in front of the mosque.

Original construction

We know that Sheikh Bahauddin was an excellent astronomer.

He applied his knowledge to the construction of the mosque: at noon, the shadow falling on the western wall disappeared, which indicated to the Muslims the time of the midday prayer.

So far, the people of Gandja check the time with the disappearing shadow – the accuracy is absolute.

During the construction, the architect was guided by precise calculation and a good knowledge of physics.

With its intricate air channel, the Juma Mosque in Gandja was heated only by a small stove.

This heating system operated until the first decades of the 20th century.

In 1776, two minarets were added to the construction of the mosque.

There is the Javad Khan tomb, belonging to the last ruler of the Ganja Khanate in the territory of the mosque.

Leading cultural figures

A madrasa operated for a long time in the mosque. Azerbaijani poet Mirza Shafi Vazeh taught calligraphy there.

One of his students was a writer-educator, poet, philosopher, one of the founders of the national drama and literary critic Mirza Fatali Akhundov.

The mosque and the madrasa have been restored in Gandja.

The Ministry of Culture recently released a video dedicated to the Shah Abbas Mosque as part of the “Let’s Make Our Islamic Heritage Known” project.

Through the video, the Ministry of Culture provided insight into the history of Shah Abbas Mosque.

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