Situated in east side of Naghsh-e Jahan Square, Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque is regarded as one of the architectural masterpieces of Safavid architecture which was built during the reign of Shah Abbas I and named after a famous Shiite preacher of those days to pay homage.
Due to not having common specifications of a mosque such as courtyard, interior iwan (large vaulted porch) and minaret as it was a private chapel for the royal women, the mosque is recognized as the most unusual Iranian religious structure but undoubtedly the most splendid of all.
Compared to the Imam Mosque, the design of the Sheikh Lotf Allah Mosque is quite simple and different; however, what makes it the peerless gem of Iranian architecture is its decoration of incredible richness, specifically the abundant tile mosaics, turquoise cable-shaped moldings and magnificent inscriptions that appeal to tourists.
Passing through the perfect glorious portal and sinuous corridor with three bends which are crucial in realigning the mosque toward Mecca, visitors encounter with an amazing prayer hall topped with the most fascinating, flaw-less Iranian dome which is extraordinary both in form and color as its cream tiles appear to change color over the course of the day, glowing pink at sunset.
Built with the finest materials and by the most gifted craftsmen, the monument’s real charm stems from its perfect symmetry as the rectangle prayer hall is linked into a circular dome; philosophically speaking, a transition from the terrestrial to the celestial world.
Also, the altar adorned with stalactites and delicate ceramics along with an elegant vaulted basement used as winter prayer hall with 16 massive pillars are of the other distinctive features of the mosque which are surely worth a visit.
While gazing up at the inner dome in the midst of natural lights emitted from the lattice windows, visitors’ spirituality heightens, making the truly unworldly mosque impossible to leave unaffected.
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