Jameh Mosque of Yazd
Yazd is not a subject to hold on to one part and let go of the others. Each time you visit this city you learn something new, or that they have to open some new traditional house which has a perfect view of the whole city on its roof. This time this city presents to you the Jameh Mosque of Yazd.
Mosques are the most important religious buildings in every city and village that have always played a notable role in the lives of Muslims. Friday prayers, religious ceremonies, sermons, and teaching were all in mosques; Because the mosque was the best place to convey government rules to people. The Jameh Mosque of Yazd played the same role.
Inserting the remaining inscriptions on the walls of some mosques (Qazvin Grand Mosque and Kashan Grand Mosque, Jameh Mosque of Yazd) contains places dedicated to the development and repair of mosques by the waqf or the ruler.
Most mosques were in the city center, near bazaars, and a limited number of government buildings. If a city needed more than one mosque, the government or charities built the other mosques. Interesting to know is that the significance of mosques in cities was so that if a city did not have a mosque or, more specific, a Cathedral Mosque like the Jameh Mosque of Yazd, was not considered an urban place.
In the early days of Islam, mosques had simple design plans. But over time, with different designs and decorations, their design map became more complicated.
The Jameh Mosque of Yazd belongs to the sixth century, AH, and today no trace of it remains, but instead, a new Jameh Mosque was built in the eighth century AH.
A complete examination of the mosque reveals that the old mosque was there, in the northeast of the current yard. The present Jameh Mosque of Yazd consists of a rectangular courtyard with a dome and a Mihrab.
The south nave leads to the domed vestibule behind the main entrance. This entrance, which repeats many times, has equivalent proportions. That is an architectural feature of the late eighth century. There are also two minarets in the upper part.
The Jameh Mosque of Yazd is important for several reasons:
First, it is the oldest example of architecture that has been imitated in the religious architecture of Yazd district during the ninth century AH. The design consists of a domed mausoleum and a long, elongated rectangular nave. Another unique feature of the building is the wide use of arches (arches and trusses) that dark blue mosaic tiles are their decorations.
The construction of the Jameh Mosque of Yazd divides into several stages:
In the first stage (728-724 AH), they built the dome, the entrance, and the foundations of the porch. In the second stage (after 735 AH), they added the porch and some decorative coverings between the years 777-795 AH.
In the third and final period of the Jameh Mosque of Yazd, the south nave, vestibule, and porches connected to the dome of the house along with the view of the courtyard and the reconstruction of the entrance and its decorative cover. Most of which is now lost.
Some inscriptions and historical texts show minor repairs and replacement of decorative coverings. For example, the dome of the main square house has a wider central opening towards the inside of the porch. It continues in the arched corridor.
The main sidewalls of the dome also have large central openings with smaller openings on either side.
The central opening of the Jameh Mosque of Yazd has been reduced in size to make room for pavilions on the royal residences. The opening altar is a deep rectangle from the sides which narrow passages lead to openings located in the corners of the room or outside.
The southern nave belongs to the second period. It consists of six openings, which wide arches that differ in width separated them.
Due to the presence of the domes of the house and the veranda – they are separated. This nave is connected to the building by a narrow five-aisle vestibule that opens to the eastern porch.
The wall of the Qibla in the Jameh Mosque of Yazd has an altar. Also, at the opposite end, a corridor leads to a square vestibule that joins the nave. The Mihrab Has a deviation; Because the direction of this atrium is the same as the entrance. It had to be directed to the right angle.
The western rafters arrange the vestibule to adapt to changing the angle of the courtyard. The northern nave has several openings that do not match the width of the domes and porch. From the vestibule that connects them to the nave, several pairs of narrow arches branch out, creating variety across the openings of the Jameh Mosque of Yazd.
The early eighth-century dome rests on an octagonal space. Mogharnas elements fill elephants and corners of the octagon. The southern nave is covered by five three-part arches.
Corridors connect the dome of the house to both the east and west hubs. Arches do not prevent the construction of skylights on the upper walls of the nave.
In the northern nave, arching is more used. The arches on the top of the rafters divide into two and, on three rafters’ additional openings are constructed.
Therefore, the number of national three-part arches is more than the eastern nave, and their number reaches nine. Also, the central part of the arches has more variety.
The tops of the arches have octagonal skylights that provide light to the nave. One of the features of this three-part arch in the Jameh Mosque of Yazd is the relatively small size of its central part concerning the length of the side parts.
The inside of the dome is decorated with a spectacular geometric design of a thousand weavers.
Also, the dome design includes seven-pointed stars that are in light blue and white colors on a pea background. The top cover of the dome is a repeated design, including rhombus patterns inside each other and tiles.
The altar of the Jameh Mosque of Yazd had mosaic tiles since 777 AH at the same time as the summer nave. The arch of the muqarnas altar and its inner body is decorated with eight rectangular and square frames of mosaic tiles on the background of unglazed pottery consisting of a geometric design.