If you’ve never been inside a mosque, you might not realize what spectacular beauty lies within. The interior artwork is breathtaking; many mosques are covered from floor to ceiling in vibrant color and intricate tilework. It’s a testament to not only human creativity but our capacity to show love and devotion through visual art. These places of worship are spaces where Muslims spend time throughout the week in prayer, studying, or simply resting and reflecting.
The holy month of Ramadan, in particular, is a period in which many Muslims spend more time in mosques. Worshipers have a greater opportunity to take in the motifs on the ceilings of these spaces. Bayt Al Fann, a website that is “a house for everyone, exploring art and culture inspired by Islamic tradition,” shared a selection of magnificent mosque ceilings in a viral Twitter thread.
“Mosque ceilings are designed to reflect the magnificence of the universe,” Bayt Al Fann tweeted. “For Ramadan, here are spectacular details of 24 Mosque ceilings from around the world.” The thread highlights a variety of designs and shares information about each place. Many of the mosques are hundreds of years old, making the thread not only dazzling for its photos but as a valuable learning opportunity as well.
Scroll down to see the tweet thread and admire the beauty and history behind these sacred spaces.
Mosque ceilings are spectacular, as this viral tweet thread by Bayt Al Fann shows.
1/ Jami Mosque, Andijan, Uzbekistan
The construction of the madrasah began in 1883 and lasted for 7 years. It has a gorgeous fretwork of wooden columns supporting a ceiling decorated with bright patterns made of a combination of geometrical ornaments & vegetal elements #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/SyL4how0KS
Construction of the mosque started in 1603 and was finished in 1619. Built by the chief architect Mohammadreza Isfahani, during the reign of Shah Abbas I of Persia. Beautiful interior dome details #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/lRazumErOh
The 14th-century mosque is still in use today. It was first built under Ala’oddoleh Garshasb of the Al-e Bouyeh dynasty. It was largely rebuilt between 1324 and 1365. The ceiling was built like a porch in the heart of the desert #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/WVuVBSNKKR
With each breathtaking photo, is some information on the mosque.
4/ Tokyo Mosque, (東京ジャーミイ), Ōyama-chō district of Shibuya ward in Tokyo, Japan
It is the largest mosque in Japan. Originally built in 1938, the current building was completed in 2000. It was designed by Hilmi Senalp, in a style inspired by Ottoman architecture #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/1wMvIfZG9F
Built to the order of Fath-Ali Shah Qajar of Persia during the Qajar period, as one of several such symbols of legitimacy for the new dynasty. Construction started in 1810 and completed in 1825. These are divine details from the ceiling #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/7FS7h9zjXS
In 1992, Qaboos bin Said al Said, the then Sultan of Oman, directed that his country should have a Grand Mosque, construction commenced in December 1994. The chandelier above the praying hall is 14 metres (46 feet) tall #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/48R8bbpVBW
7/ Al-Askari Mosque, Samarra, Salah al-Din Governorate, Northern Iraq
It was built in 944 and is a Shia Muslim mosque and mausoleum in the Iraqi city of Samarra 125 km (78 mi) from Baghdad. It is one of the most important Shia shrines in the world & decorated in tiles #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/eVfT6y1OyB
Built in 1712, on the opposite side of the citadel of Ark in Registan district. Thin columns made of painted wood were added to the frontal part of the iwan (entrance) in 1917. The columns are decorated with colored muqarnas #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/HjUmkmbGa7
Some of the buildings are hundreds of years old, while others were completed much more recently than that.
9/ Jama Masjid, Delhi, India
Built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan between 1650 & 1656, & inaugurated by its first Imam, Syed Abdul Ghafoor Shah Bukhari. Situated in Old Delhi, it served as the imperial mosque of the Mughal emperors until the end of the empire in 1857#Ramadanpic.twitter.com/gcgeOHGaou
Built during the Qajar dynasty in 1876 by the order of Mirza Hassan Ali Nasir-ol-Mulk, and was completed in 1888. The designers were Mohammad Hasan-e-Memār, Mohammad Hosseini Shirazi, and Mohammad Rezā Kāshi-Sāz-e-Širāzi #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/jb5EnYywWr
11/ Al-Masjid an-Nabawi Masjid, Medina, Saudi Arabia
Built by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) it was the second mosque built in Medina after Masjid Quba’, and is the second largest mosque and second holiest site in Islam, both titles ranking after the Masjid al-Haram in Mecca #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/6Vdt7E0GJn
Built in 1641 it is considered the most ornately decorated Mughal-era mosque, and is renowned for its intricate faience tile work known as kashi-kari, as well as its interior surfaces that are embellished with Mughal-era frescoes #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/EwvY73iNmS
Built in 1773 in memory of the celebrated Persian poet Hafez. The open pavilion structures are situated in the Musalla Gardens on the north bank of a seasonal river and house the marble tomb of Hafez #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/4q6ZYuiba6
Built by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb between 1671 & 1673 it was the largest mosque in the world from 1673 to 1986. An important example of Mughal architecture, with an exterior that is decorated with carved red sandstone with marble inlay #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/zabkSwwPaU
17/ The Great Mosque of Muhammad Ali Pasha, Cairo, Egypt
Commissioned by Muhammad Ali Pasha between 1830 & 1848.
Situated on the summit of the citadel this Ottoman mosque was the largest built in the first half of the 19th century & is the most visible mosque in Cairo #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/YAYrvqvtCq
18/ The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
The largest mosque in the country, it was constructed between 1994 & 2007. The project was launched by the late president of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/NxJvTMd10r
The thread features mosques from around the world—from the Middle East to Japan to England.
19/ Cambridge Central Mosque, Cambridge, England
Completed in 2019. Europe’s first eco-sustainable mosque, its design incorporates local architecture, Islamic motifs & the use of timber to create interwoven pillars that form an octagonal canopy evoking a calming oasis #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/BJXpnaRwb2
Commissioned a decade after the adjacent Shir Dar madrasa (1619-1636). The last, largest and most embellished structure of the famed Registan Square. It’s name means ”gold-covered’, referring to the decoration of its domed chamber #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/acHAz7yICb
Many Afghanis believe Ali ibn Abi Talib is buried here. The building gives the city, Mazari Sharif (meaning “Tomb of the Exalted”) its name. The shrine was erected here in 1136 and the interior ceiling is a splendour of colour #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/Fi9qF0AJlh
An Ottoman-era historical imperial mosque located in Istanbul, Turkey. A functioning mosque, it also attracts large numbers of tourist visitors. It was constructed between 1609 and 1616 during the rule of Ahmed I #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/AmZDY00QA0
Contains the mausoleum of Imam Reza and is the largest mosque in the world by area. It was built in 821 AH under the orders of Gowharshad Khatun, Shahrokh Mirza’s wife #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/uUDrBZnJOI
Building began in 1997 & completed two years later. The pink-domed Mosque is constructed with rose-tinted granite & includes a prayer hall, courtyard & learning facilities. The mosque can accommodate 15,000 worshippers #Ramadanpic.twitter.com/yclbwSKe7M