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View Poll Results: Is there Islamic Architecture
Yes 137 74.05%
No 36 19.46%
I don't know! 12 6.49%
Voters: 185. You may not vote on this poll

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Old December 23rd, 2010, 01:01 PM   #81
end2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tpe View Post
If some of you persist in still not getting it, I'll try another track.

If there is no such thing as Christian or Islamic, or Buddhist architecture, then can you name me a mosque or a christian church that has a STUPA?

So would you agree that a STUPA is unique to Buddhism, having been (so the story goes) defined by the historical Buddha himself?
Stupa evolve from ancient burial mound to bury holy relic.

But eastern (Indian) religion architecture is different from western reliigion. In eastern religion, the whole structure is object of veneration. The geometrical (mandala) shape important, and holy. Concept is not a 'building' with 'room' but like sculpture or public artwork.

Stupa do not have any hollow space inside. It is not 'building' in western sense. So it is creation of Buddhist religion, almost 100%.



Islam different because Mosque is building for worshipers. Shape and size and other detail can be anything, except few rules:

London Mega Mosque (canceled)


Last edited by end2012; December 23rd, 2010 at 01:17 PM.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 01:09 PM   #82
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I just showed an example of Islamic architecture in post # 80
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 01:52 PM   #83
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Well, there are Buddhist prayer halls that focus on a stupa as an object of circumambulation:



But it is true that mosques are much more flexible, architecturally.

Still, there are rules that distinguish it from say Christian churches or Buddhist temples.

For example, whenever there is an associated tower, it is 100% sure to have no bells and belfries. The reason is obvious: the call to prayer must be done via the human voice, and it is not the practice in Islam for the call to assembly to be instigated by bells, wooden clappers, or other musical instruments. This influences the overall architecture of the towers (making them narrower than Christian bell towers, and having parapets on which the muzziain can stand), which is why we distinguish them by the name of "minaret".

Our friend Cyrus would call to our attention the great tower at Samarra, and its semblance to a ziggurat. But no ziggurat is that slim, and a ziggurat had completely different details and structural plans. The winding access is incidental. And the tower or Samarra is certainly NOT in the style of Zoroastrian towers.



Quote:
Originally Posted by end2012 View Post
Stupa evolve from ancient burial mound to bury holy relic.

But eastern (Indian) religion architecture is different from western reliigion. In eastern religion, the whole structure is object of veneration. The geometrical (mandala) shape important, and holy. Concept is not a 'building' with 'room' but like sculpture or public artwork.

Stupa do not have any hollow space inside. It is not 'building' in western sense. So it is creation of Buddhist religion, almost 100%.



Islam different because Mosque is building for worshipers. Shape and size and other detail can be anything, except few rules:

London Mega Mosque (canceled)


Last edited by tpe; December 23rd, 2010 at 02:05 PM.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 02:03 PM   #84
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I say before, there are few rules which mosque must follow. But rest can be different.

Mosque can look like Gothic cathedral also (but no idol), can look like Greek temple or Chinese temple also.

So if Mosque copy Greek temple, then Greek temple architecture become Islamic?

Maybe one can say, Mosque have this and this rule, so to that extent, Islamic architecture. But Dome building, tile decoration and other so-called "Islamic" thing not unique to Islamic building.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 02:08 PM   #85
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Originally Posted by end2012 View Post
I say before, there are few rules which mosque must follow. But rest can be different.

Mosque can look like Gothic cathedral also (but no idol), can look like Greek temple or Chinese temple also.

So if Mosque copy Greek temple, then Greek temple architecture become Islamic?

Yes, I did note your qualification, which is correct.

A Mosque can look like a gothic cathedral, but having a central nave, side aisles, and apses would not make that much sense with regards to the requirements of Moslem worship. Still, churches have been converted to mosques, and vice versa. But in nearly call cases, adjustments and alterations had to be made to make them fit for the new worship.

The fact that most mosques did not evolve in the style and plan of Greek temples (even in Greece during Ottoman times) tells you of how ill-fitted such a style of building would have been for the needs of Moslem worship.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 02:32 PM   #86
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When I say "look like gothic cathedral". I do not say that it copy exact plan. But the roof construction, pillar style, detail and decoration can be like gothic cathedral. Same for Greek temple. The pillar and roof can be like Greek temple.

But maybe as I say, to compromise, mosque have certain rules. Beyond these rules, there is not any specific thing like "Islamic architecture". So maybe "Islamic architecture" = "rules for building mosque and other buildings for Islamic purpose".

Maybe muslim people disagree with me, because they want to call every thing as "Islamic". True that scholars also used such terms for long time. But scholar also depend on lot of assumption, and in modern age those assumptions no longer true. I feel.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 02:48 PM   #87
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I believe calling Persian, Byzantine and other architectures as Islamic architecture, is an insult to them, the architecture of Muslims can be seen in those tents of the Arabs in the desert, of course Arab tents were set up before Islam too but it is true that Muslims spread them to some other regions.

Courtyard of ancient Persian Tarikhaneh Temple:

http://www.allempires.com/uploads/Tarikhaneh1.jpg

http://www.allempires.com/uploads/Tarikhaneh2.jpg

http://www.allempires.com/uploads/Tarikhaneh3.jpg

More info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarikhaneh_Temple

The wikipedia entry says: "after the fall of the Sassanid Empire it was rebuilt and converted into a mosque in the 8th century" hence the courtyard.

I am very familiar with the architecture of the Zoroastrians and such a courtyard is not present in any other fire temple. It is probably just a product of the rebuilding. Also, the use of the courtyard in Islamic architecture did not originate from Persia, however was started to be used in Egypt, Damascus and Iraq first.

By the way, you make it sound like Persians are not Muslim and forget that most Persians converted to Islam and only a very minor community was left as Zoroastrian. Its only natural that most of their architectural forms would get Islamized as well. You represent only a tiny minority of the leftover Persians who did not convert. And you forget that its not just Arabs who are Muslim, but Persian, Berber, Assyrian, Chinese and many other ethnicities as well. Even though Ottoman architecture was very much influenced by Byzantine, they are both in no way the same category since their massing and decoration changed vastly due to islamic influence.

Last edited by swerveut; December 23rd, 2010 at 03:01 PM.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 02:57 PM   #88
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Quote:
Originally Posted by end2012 View Post
When I say "look like gothic cathedral". I do not say that it copy exact plan. But the roof construction, pillar style, detail and decoration can be like gothic cathedral. Same for Greek temple. The pillar and roof can be like Greek temple.

But maybe as I say, to compromise, mosque have certain rules. Beyond these rules, there is not any specific thing like "Islamic architecture". So maybe "Islamic architecture" = "rules for building mosque and other buildings for Islamic purpose".

Maybe muslim people disagree with me, because they want to call every thing as "Islamic". True that scholars also used such terms for long time. But scholar also depend on lot of assumption, and in modern age those assumptions no longer true. I feel.
Islamic influenced = Islamic. The Mughal, Safavid, Ottoman, Mamluk, Moroccan (and some other) architectural traditions can all be classified into their own distinct groupings which evolved primarily due to the heavy influence of Islam which influenced the form and motifs of the building.

By the way, there do exist mosques in the shape of classical greek temples (see one in Algeria) and like gothic cathedrals (a converted one), albeit as mentioned earlier, neither are these styles well suited for Muslim functions, nor did Islam influence their development. Therefore, these cannot be called Islamic architecture in the least.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 02:57 PM   #89
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Our friend Cyrus would call to our attention the great tower at Samarra, and its semblance to a ziggurat. But no ziggurat is that slim, and a ziggurat had completely different details and structural plans. The winding access is incidental. And the tower or Samarra is certainly NOT in the style of Zoroastrian towers.

Samarra mosque Tower come from Persian Sassanid Fire Temple Tower at Firouzabad:

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Old December 23rd, 2010, 03:00 PM   #90
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That's my point.

I think many here confuse architectural styles with architectural elements that transcend styles.

Religious architecture transcends such styles, owing to elements characteristic of the religious requirements.


Constructs like nave, dome, ambulatory, piers, squinches, floor plans, etc. A Gothic church is very different in style from a Baroque church or a Byzantine church, but certain architectural elements remain the same throughout the centuries. These are the elements that define "Christian architecture"

To take your example, a Baroque Church may have different pillars from a Gothic church, but in both Baroque and Gothic Churches, the central nave is flanked by colonnades, which is characteristic of the BASILICAN plan.

The same with CLERESTORY WINDOWS. Gothic churches have stained glass while Baroque churches have clear glass. But BOTH have clerestory windows.

Mosques certainly have architectural elements that transcend styles. The Mihrab os one such example of an architectural element unique to Islam. It does not matter whether it is made of marble, tile, wood, gold, or cow dung, or is in the Byzantine, Persian, Timurid, or Chinese styles. A Mihrab is Islamic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by end2012 View Post
When I say "look like gothic cathedral". I do not say that it copy exact plan. But the roof construction, pillar style, detail and decoration can be like gothic cathedral. Same for Greek temple. The pillar and roof can be like Greek temple.

But maybe as I say, to compromise, mosque have certain rules. Beyond these rules, there is not any specific thing like "Islamic architecture". So maybe "Islamic architecture" = "rules for building mosque and other buildings for Islamic purpose".

Maybe muslim people disagree with me, because they want to call every thing as "Islamic". True that scholars also used such terms for long time. But scholar also depend on lot of assumption, and in modern age those assumptions no longer true. I feel.

Last edited by tpe; December 23rd, 2010 at 03:09 PM.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 03:12 PM   #91
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^I have no problem with your definition.

But I have problem with swerveuts definition. He say that everything Islam influence become Islamic, no longer belong to the region and people. That is the problem.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 03:18 PM   #92
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Samarra mosque Tower come from Persian Sassanid Fire Temple Tower at Firouzabad:

Again you illustrate my point. Minarets do not have fire houses at the pinnacle, as in Zoroastrian towers. The same way that minarets do not have belfries at the summit, as do Christian Church towers.

And as I said, the winding access is incidental. This has been a feature of towers and ziggurats all around the Near East since the Sumerians.

But I think you get my point...
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 03:23 PM   #93
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Originally Posted by end2012 View Post
^I have no problem with your definition.

But I have problem with swerveuts definition. He say that everything Islam influence become Islamic, no longer belong to the region and people. That is the problem.

It's a matter or agreeing with definitions. I think that not all Persian architecture is Islamic, for instance. The same with Mughal architecture, and the rest.

The same with Western architecture. Not all Gothic architecture is Christian, although a lot of it is.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 03:34 PM   #94
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^I have no problem with your definition.

But I have problem with swerveuts definition. He say that everything Islam influence become Islamic, no longer belong to the region and people. That is the problem.
The quote in Bold is merely your addition to what I said. Islamic architecture is a very very broad category and there are thousands of styles that are included in it. Persian Islamic architecture is still "PERSIAN" islamic architecture. Nobody takes away the word persian, so no need to be insecure about it. Chinese Islamic architecture is purely chinese modified to serve the Islamic purpose. Mughal architecture is again Persian modified by turkic and indic architectural elements and heavily modified due to Islamic requirements. etc etc.

This is the beauty of Islam. Its historically been a very incorporating religion. Even the murdering mongols when they conquered islamic lands became civilized and converted to Islam.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 03:50 PM   #95
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That's my point.


Religious architecture transcends such styles, owing to elements characteristic of the religious requirements.

Exactly. However, when you group architectural elements serving a religious purpose together, you have a style in its own right. Lets classify:

Minarets in Islam serve a very different purpose than the minaret of the fire temple being presented here. Whereas the fire temple structure was to display the fire far and wide (like a light-house), a minaret's purpose is totally different. Its something that maybe Muslims saw, then said, hey! this thing totally works our purpose for the prayer call! And the form was adopted. Islamic minarets however range very widely in form. From circular capped with a cupola on top (called chhatri - Mughal style) to slender pencil shaped ones (ottoman style), to square shaped decorated towers (Morrocan / Iberian style) or torch shaped ones (central asia).

Mihrab - a niche specifically built for the prayer leader, this is not existant in other forms, but found in almost 100% of mosques.

Courtyard with Ablutions fountain - totally Islamic you find it in all mosque styles from Mughal to Ottoman to Moroccan.

Prayer hall - again a very different hall form from that of a bascilica or a church or a zoroastrian temple. Specifically suited to accomodate worshippers praying in rows (see the grand mosque of Cordoba for great example).

Fountains and streams in formal gardens and palaces - a feature heavily influenced by Islamic imagery of paradise and heavily used in ISLAMIC persian, moorish, mughal, ottoman secular architecture.

Calligraphy / florid / geometric designs and tilework for decoration of the architecture, as opposed to statuary, iconography or symbolism.

If you combine these elements together, what you get is voila! Islamic architecture.

It should be noted that Islamic empire in older periods was a very fluid and dynamic empire where people travelled extensively for trade and therefore ideas travelled fast. Hence, architectural motif and styles also spread fast and similar elements were adopted by a number of locations.

Last edited by swerveut; December 23rd, 2010 at 05:07 PM.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 05:05 PM   #96
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Not really. It's a bit embarrassing you would put that off as informative and not a patronizing whitewash.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 05:30 PM   #97
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tpe View Post
It's a matter or agreeing with definitions. I think that not all Persian architecture is Islamic, for instance. The same with Mughal architecture, and the rest.

The same with Western architecture. Not all Gothic architecture is Christian, although a lot of it is.
Bingo. You can't just lump all buildings which were commissioned during some "Islamic" regimes reign and claim it as Islamic unless it was perhaps transformational or truly innovative.

When talking historical classification it's better to refer to the name of the empires/states something took place for the sake of specificity.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 05:35 PM   #98
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Not really. It's a bit embarrassing you would put that off as informative and not a patronizing whitewash.
Do you feel patronized by fact?

Thats informative.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 05:42 PM   #99
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Do you feel patronized by fact?

Thats informative.
Saying that Mohammad commanded his fighters to fight "like hippies" is deeply patronizing and historically insulting among other fallacies in the article which I can't be arsed to go into.
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Old December 23rd, 2010, 06:22 PM   #100
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Yes there is something called Islamic architecture and for example, there are
reasons why mosques have elements when they are built, they are built by
an Islamic standard, which diverse from region to region. There are classes
being taught throughout the whole world in universities called Islamic
architectures.

There are modern Islamic architectures you can see in Jeddah, Kuala-
Lumpur and Istanbul, there are also old Islamic architectures you can
see in Iran, Yemen and Bosnia.

They are all under the umbrella of Islamic architectures. This thread shows
how diverse Islam is in many ways culture wise and architecture wise.

Islamic world share from each other, the same way Persians influenced
Arabs and Turks, also Arabs and Turks influenced Persians.

Those 3 short clips show how diverse Islamic culture and architectures are:





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