Impressions of Islamic Architecture Essay Example
Impressions of Islamic Architecture Essay Example

Impressions of Islamic Architecture Essay Example

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  • Pages: 3 (552 words)
  • Published: November 28, 2017
  • Type: Essay
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The Islamic style is recognized as the original architectural style in the Middle East, Asia Minor, and certain areas of southern Asia.

The Islamic architecture found in this region is influenced by both cultural and religious beliefs. Even though Islam has played a significant part in shaping the structures, the foundation of the designs and forms was laid over 3000 years before Islam was born. The architects responsible for what is presently known as Islamic architecture belonged to the cultures of Mesopotamia, which is also referred to as the "Cradle of Civilization." Located between the Mediterranean, Red, and Dead Seas in the Middle East and Asia Minor, this area was known for its arid climate with scarce rainfall.

During ancient times, the construction of dwellings and functional buildings was influenced by climatic conditions. The houses built by native peop


les had a short roof and featured a central courtyard, giving them a "container" shape. This is in contrast to modern Western homes, which are designed to be "contained". Furthermore, the use of locally-sourced materials was a prominent feature in their designs.

Adobe is the favored building material for all types of structures due to the scarcity of trees and stone quarries. It offers the advantage of thermal massing, which means that it insulates and retains heat during the day and releases it while preventing cold at night. This becomes particularly relevant in areas lacking moisture and humidity, where daytime temperatures can soar to 120 degrees and nighttime temperatures can drop to 40.

Assisting in this function are small window openings. Additionally, the buildings possess basement areas that span one or two levels, which remain at a consistent temperature of

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sixty to seventy degrees. These underground places are not visible from the exterior. To facilitate cooling, "wind catchers" are occasionally employed.

These elevated structures serve to capture wind from all directions through their octagonal-shaped vents and channel it down to the lower levels of habitation that remain shaded and cool. While originating long ago in Mesopotamia, these designs continue to contribute significantly to sustainable architecture today. One can find remarkable examples of Middle Eastern architecture in the grand citadels and impressive mosques, both notable for their imposing presence. The citadel, which includes a central palace or military installation surrounded by smaller satellite buildings and a formidable perimeter wall, has an ancient history dating back to 2600 BC. Similarly, the pointed arch represents another enduring example of ancient architectural accomplishments.

The form of a mosque typically consists of a circular dome atop an octagonal base, accompanied by minarets on the four corners. This shape can be traced back to ruins from 3000 BC, while mosques themselves are more contemporary compared to the age of citadels. However, there are other variations of this form, and the exterior shapes of mosques primarily rely on regular geometry. The use of simple geometric shapes in repeating complex patterns provides intricate details for the structure.

Although Islamic architecture is renowned for its utilization of geometry to create both simple and intricate designs, the focus primarily lies on the interior details rather than the exterior. The ceilings, walls, and floors are adorned with tapestries of geometric patterns, which result in a breathtaking aesthetic. However, the most crucial lesson to be gleaned from Islamic architecture is the significance of being considerate of the climate and

local resources.

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