I am truly sorry for my absence For the last week. As I posted before, I went to Bali for my vacation, and a few days ago (and still am) I have bouts of migraine, I had to take a few days rest from the office and subsequently, from my laptop. However, I have some strength to post something today.
Since there is no Imagining Islamic Aesthetic post last week, I will start my first post in this category. This week we will look into domes, or more specifically, Islamic domes, one of the most prominent feature of Islamic architecture.
Domes is an element in architecture, resembling a hollow upper half of a sphere. It is used all over the world from Europe to Middle-East to Asia, with period stretching to prehistorical times. There are quite a number of types of domes, but for now we will look into pictures and brief introductions, because we will revisit this topic and will discuss it in further details.
The Green Dome (Arabic:القبة الخضراء), one of the most important dome in Islamic world, since directly under it is the tomb of the founder of the Islamic Faith, Muhammad (p.b.u.h). It is said to be dated back to the 12th Century, the colour used -green – being the favourite colour of the prophet.
The Hagia Sophia in Turkey. This is originally a church – hence the name. then it was converted to a mosque, then a museum. The dome is the inspiration of other Ottoman mosques that will follow suit in Turkey.
The Dome of the Rock, built around 154 years after Hagia Sophia. It is the first true Islamic Dome, since Hagia Sophia is technically not an Islamic structure – being a converted building.
The Taj Mahal. The Dome is quite characteristic to Central Asia, to India and its neighbours. It is onion-shaped, though it is less onion shaped, perhaps influenced by the middle eastern domes.
The interior of the dome of La Mezquita, Cordoba, Spain. Many of the domes in the Islamic World are heavily decorated, as you can see with this one, since it is usually the focal point of a mosque or any Islamic building that utilizes domes as a part of the architecture.
Masjid Sultan, one of the most famous mosques in Singapore. The dome is Onion-shaped, but rounder than Taj Mahal. the domes of the mosques in South East Asia are generally rounder and onion shaped, because the builders and the worshippers are mostly Indian Muslim immigrants. Native South East Asian Muslims mosques often don’t have domes as part of the architectural feature.
The Mosque of Sayyidah Zaynab, the granddaughter of the prophet Muhammad. It is a shrine for the Shi’a Muslims, and so, the dome signify as such.