The Islamic Empire was one of the largest Empires of the world at its time of power. The Islamic Empire refers to the ancient caliphates established after Muhammad’s death, and which spread to control most of the Middle East, Eastern Europe and Northern Africa all the way up to the collapse of the Ottoman Empire in the medieval era.
The Golden Age of Islam was a time of huge development for the early Islamic world. There were a great number of scientific, technological and cultural advances in this period (790 – 1258 A.D.), and Arabic art and architecture reached heights which had never been seen before.
The Golden Age of Islam was like the renaissance of Europe, a time of great progress for society which saw huge steps forward in nearly every sector.
The effect of the Golden Age of Islam were not only confined to the Islamic Empire; due to how far Islamic traders travelled to sell their wares, the ideas of the Golden Age of Islam spread far and wide, and formed the basis for many modern systems that are still in place today, such as mathematics, medicine, philosophy, and architecture.
While the Golden Age of Islam saw a number of great developments in the field of engineering and construction, its most significant contribution to the field of architecture came in the form of the mosques which were constructed during it.
A mosque is a place of worship for those of the Islamic faith. Mosques first came into existence following the death of the Prophet Muhammad, as Islam only became popular in the years afterward.
Mosques were built all over the Islamic Empire, and nowadays can be found across the world. The world’s most famous mosques are in the Middle East, however, as this was where the religion of Islam originated.
Ancient mosques are architectural marvels, and most are extremely beautiful and lavishly decorated with arabesque tiles and carpets – arabesque is a word which refers to a style of pattern that uses interconnected leaves and flowers as its main imagery.
Calligraphy is also a common decoration within mosques, a special form of writing that is most often used to display select phrases from the Quran.
Some mosques are specifically built with external towers called minarets. A minaret is the tower built on the outside of a mosque which is used to call Muslims to prayer.
Minarets are usually tall, narrow towers, with just enough room for one person to stand on top of. Five times a day, a man called a “muezzin” calls the Muslims of the community to prayer from the top of the mosque’s minaret.
Some countries, such as Spain, were controlled initially by the Islamic Empire, but later taken over by the Catholic Church. In these countries, many mosques were repurposed as Christian churches, and these sites are of architectural interest to historians.
The kind of homes people lived in during the reign of the Islamic Empire depended greatly on their wealth. The very poor lived in houses made of mud or rough brick – structures that were little more than shelters from the wind, and weren’t very warm or comfortable.
The richer Muslims lived in grand houses fit for a whole family, which were built similarly to those of the ancient Roman Empire.
These homes had decorated walls and floors, multiple bedrooms, and an indoor courtyard for air conditioning. The kinds of stone used in these homes were like those of the Roman Empire as well, such as sandstone, limestone, and marble.
Mosques are the most common example of Islamic architecture, and there are a great number of famous ones in the world. Here’s a list of some of the most well-known:
– The Golden Age of Islam.
– The minaret was a town built on the outside of a mosque. It was used to call Muslims to prayer.
– The Blue Mosque.
– The homes of the poor were usually made from mud or sunbaked brick.