Apr 8, 2014

Jami Masjid in Gulbarga Fort - Gulbarga district, North Karnataka, c1880s

The Jami Masjid was erected in the fort at Gulbarga by Ala-ud-din Hasan Bahmani Shah (r.1347-1358), founder of the Bahmani dynasty. An inscription records that it was completed in 1367 but aspects of the ornament suggest it was completed in the early 15th century during the reign of Firuz Shah (r.1397-1422). Its plan resembles the Great Mosque of Córdoba in Spain. The mosque is unusual as the central area, which would normally have been an open courtyard, is covered over with numerous small domes. Three of the outer walls are not solid but made up of open arcades. The main sanctuary is crowned with a high dome above a square clerestory.

The mosque has no open courtyard. The outer passageways surround the prayer hall on three sides and have low open arcades with arches. They form a rectangular layout with ten bays each on the north and the south, and seven bays on the east. The square bays on the corners are topped by domes. The roofed interior bays are covered with low domes, faceted by pendentives. The front yard in front of the mihrab has nine bays with a single large dome. Trefoil interiors and elongated lobes are seen on sloping arches of the drum. The main roof drum is mounted on a cubic clerestory. The wooden screens that existed on the outer arcade openings have been removed over the years. They have been replaced, in recent times, by an arched entrance portal on the north face. On the whole, the mosque displays distinct Persian architectural style with five large domes (One large and four small at the corners) and 75 small domes with 250 arches.
(Wikipedia and British Library)

Source: British Library