Great Mosque of Samarra

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The Great Mosque of Samarra is an Islamic mosque located in the Iraqi city of Samarra and was built in the 9th century. The mosque was commissioned by Abbasid caliph Al-Mutawakkil who reigned (in Samarra) from 847 until 861.

Image:Minaret Samarra Iraq.jpg
A soldier descends the Malwiya Tower in Samarra, Iraq.

The Great Mosque of Samarra was at one time the largest mosque in the world; its minaret, the Malwiya Tower, is a vast spiralling cone 52 meters high and 33 meters wide with a spiral ramp. [1]

The mosque had 17 aisles and its walls were panelled with mosaics of dark blue glass. It was just part of an extension of Samarra eastwards that built upon part of the walled royal hunting park inherited from the conquered Sassanians.

On April 1, 2005, the top of the Malwiya minaret was damaged by insurgents who were reportedly attacking US soldiers using the tower as a sniper position. The blast left pieces of brick from the top of the minaret along its spiral ramp. [2] [3]

[edit] Popular Culture

In the computer game Civilization 4, by Firaxis, the Great Mosque of Samarra is one of the many wonders you can build. It is called the Spiral Minaret, however.

[edit] References and Notes

  1.   See al-Jazeera article concerning damage to the mosque.
  2.   See BBC article concerning damage to the mosque.
  3.   See Historic Mosques site.

[edit] External links

ta:சாமராவின் பெரிய மசூதி

Great Mosque of Samarra

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