The Sixty Dome Mosque, also known as the Shait Gambuj Mosque, is a historic and important cultural mosque located in the city of Bagerhat in Bangladesh. The mosque was built in the 15th century during the Bengal Sultanate period.
The mosque is considered by historians to be one of the largest and most impressive monuments from the Sultanate period and to this day it is a significant tourist attraction.
What is the Sixty Dome Mosque?
The mosque, located in the Indian subcontinent, is a fascinating structure with many distinct features. This impressive mosque has walls made of unusually thick and tapered masonry in the Tughlaq style and an unusual hut-shaped roof line that anticipates future styles.
Externally the plan is 148′ x 101′, containing 77 low domes arranged in seven rows of eleven, with an additional four corner domes for a total of 81, as well as four towers. Internally the mosque is divided into many aisles and bays by slender columns which culminate in numerous arches that support the roof.
This dark and somber space is illuminated through the 11 arched doorways on the east side and 7 on the north and south side respectively.
The walls are also particularly thick at 6 feet deep. Clearly, the Sixty Dome Mosque is full of unique features making it a truly amazing building worth admiration.
In the middle of the 15th century, a Muslim colony was founded in the Sundarbans by none other than the saint-General named Khan Jahan Ali. During his time as governor of this province under the reign of Sultan Nasiruddin Mahmud Shah, he vastly improved the region.
He most notably had twelve mosques built, the Shait-Gumbad Masjid being the most impressive and well-known. While it served its primary purpose of housing prayers to God, it also acted more broadly as an assembly hall for meetings and a madrasah for educational purposes.
This Shait-Gumbad building has become one of Bangladesh’s finest historical landmarks. It is still present today from Khan Jahan’s generous and devoted work, centuries ago.
Architectural Features: Notable Characteristics.
The mosque is an architectural marvel renowned for its awe-inspiring features. Built during the Sultanate period, it has been a symbol of Bangladeshi culture and heritage for centuries.
The architecture of the Sixty Dome Mosque reflects the traditional Bengali style, which incorporates Islamic motifs into the design. Its grandiose entranceway leads to a vast open courtyard with 60 pillars supporting its 15 domes spread across three levels. The interior walls are decorated with intricate geometric patterns made from terracotta tiles and glazed bricks arranged in floral designs – a classic example of Bangla artistry.
Cultural Significance: Religious and Social Impact.
The Sixty Dome Mosque, or Sixty Pillared Mosque, is the largest brick structure of its kind in South Asia. It is considered a legacy of ancient Bengal architecture and stands as a testament to the religious veneration of the era.
Beyond its historical significance, the Sixty Dome Mosque has had a tremendous social impact in Bangladesh. In addition to being used as a place of worship for centuries, it also served as an important spiritual hub for travelers who were passing through Bangladesh.
The mosque has been a drawing point for visitors from both inside and outside the country who are interested in learning more about its unique construction technique and wider cultural implications.
Preservation Efforts: Restoration Projects.
The Sixty Dome Mosque is considered one of the country’s most important historical sites. Unfortunately, the mosque has been deteriorating for several years due to environmental changes and a lack of preservation efforts.
To save this cultural treasure from further damage, locals have created a restoration project with the support of UNESCO and other international organizations. This project focuses on restoring the structure’s exterior and interior elements so that the mosque can preserve its original beauty for years to come.
As part of their efforts, they have already repaired parts of the roofing system and are now strengthening its foundation and walls so that they can withstand future deterioration.
Visitors Guide to Exploring the Site.
Guided tours allow visitors to explore the site and learn about its history. The mosque is home to several breath-taking views of the surrounding landscape and many artefacts from centuries past.
Visitors are encouraged to participate in activities such as prayer or observe their surroundings while learning about the site’s rich heritage. With its unique architecture and strong presence within Bangladeshi culture.
The Sixty Dome Mosque is a unique and awe-inspiring structure that stands as an important symbol of Bangladeshi culture. Its intricate brickwork, a grand entranceway, and beautiful terracotta tiles make it one of the most impressive historical monuments in South Asia.
Through preservation efforts by locals and international organizations, it is hoped that this cultural treasure will remain intact for generations to come.
Should you decide to visit Bangladesh then be sure to add the Sixty Dome Mosque to your itinerary – its rich heritage and amazing structure is not to be missed.