Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Shat Gambuj Mosque

Shat Gambuj Mosque
The Sixty Pillar Mosque (the Shat Gambuj), a mosque located in Bagerhat in south Bangladesh, on the eastern bank of a sweet water tank or pond (the takur dighi) is one of the oldest mosques in the country, and is described as "historic mosque representing the Golden Era of Muslim Bengal It is laid is over an area of 160 feet (49 m)x108 feet (33 m) size. 

The mosque is unique in the sense that it has 60 pillars that support 77 exquisitely curved "low squat domes" that have worn away with the passage of time; it has seven central domes that are four-sided and built in Bengali style.It was used for prayers, as an assembly hall and madrasa (an Islamic school). Seventy seven domes are over the roof and four smaller ones at the four corners are towers (the towers were used to call the faithfuls to attend prayers). 

The large prayer hall has 11 arched doorways on the east and 7 each on the north and south which provide ventilation and light to the hall. There are also 7 longitudinal aisles and 11 deep bays in the midst of slim columns made of stone. These columns support the curving arches that are overlaid by the domes.The west wall in the interior has eleven mihrabs that are decorated with stonework and terracotta and the flooring is of brickwork. The walls and the mihrabs were affected by sulphates. Most of the damages have been rectified. It was established in 1440 by Khan Jahan Ali. The arches are 6 feet (1.8 m) thick with a slight taper over the hollow and round walls. The mosque also functioned as the court of Khan Jahan Ali. It now attracts a large number of tourists and visitors every year. The mosque is decorated mostly with terracotta and bricks.

No comments: