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Number Seven Thousand Four Hundred and Thirty Four - 14 November 2023
Iran Daily - Number Seven Thousand Four Hundred and Thirty Four - 14 November 2023 - Page 3

Kerman Grand Mosque, a historic masterpiece

Many cities in Iran boast historical monuments, which intriguingly stand as some of the most captivating tourist attractions in their respective cities. Kerman, a beautiful city located in southeastern Iran and renowned for its wealth of historical monuments, is no exception.
The Mozaffari Mosque, popularly known as the Kerman Grand Mosque, is a historic masterpiece displaying unique and magnificent architecture that never fails to capture the attention of tourists.
Construction of the Kerman Grand Mosque took place around 1349 CE, during the reign of “Amir Mobaraz al-Din Muhammad Mozaffari Meybodi,” one of the kings of the Muzaffarids. Consequently, the mosque bears the original name of Mozaffari Grand Mosque.
Historical documents and accounts reveal that the Grand Mosque was initially constructed outside the city of Kerman. However, as the city expanded over the years, it eventually encompassed the mosque within its boundaries.
Legend has it that Muhammad Mozaffari Meybodi engaged in a fierce battle against the “Jerman and Oghan,” a Turk tribe. In the face of uncertainty, he sought to create a lasting legacy for himself if he emerged victorious. After surviving the war, he came to Kerman and resolved to build this very mosque. It is said that he utilized the proceeds from farming and selling his agricultural products in Meybod to finance the mosque’s construction. Thus began the story of this magnificent structure.
The mosque features three entrance doors on its west, east, and north sides. The courtyard spans 66.5 meters in length and 49 meters in width, covering an area of 3,258 square meters. The east entrance, adorned with exquisite tilework, captivates visitors’ eyes, further enhanced by the presence of a clock atop the entrance, adding to its splendor.
This mosque is part of a group of four-ivan mosques. The tilework within the mosque is renowned for its remarkable beauty. Notably, the eastern entrance boasts breathtaking muqarnas works that make it a must-visit attraction.
The mosaic tiles in the mihrab, found on the mosque’s western side, deserve special mention. Some experts regard this mosaic tiling, along with the eastern entrance, as the most prized aspect of the building. The mihrab’s edges are made of marble, while delicate calligraphy lines on the tiles, combined with a harmonious yellow color palette, contribute to its magnificence.
However, venture beyond the west side of the mihrab, and you’ll encounter the shrine of a poet. This shrine belongs to “Raji Kermani,” a Persian poet.
Like many historical landmarks in the country, Mozaffari Mosque has suffered damage throughout its history and has undergone numerous reconstructions. During the reign of Shah Abbas II, a restoration project breathed new life into this historic mosque. Additionally, Mohammad Taghi Khan Durrani, the ruler of Kerman during the Zand Dynasty, rebuilt sections of the mosque in 1763, as evidenced by inscriptions atop the minaret.
Another instance of restoration followed the gunfire by Agha Mohammad Khan Qajar, which damaged the eastern entrance.
The Kerman Grand Mosque has endured cycles of damage and reconstruction throughout its history. Today, this historical complex stands proudly as a notable attraction within Kerman Province.
Notably, its reconstruction owes much to the grand architect of Isfahan, “Inayatullah ibn Nizamuddin.” His name adorns the mosque’s grand ivan, symbolizing his significant contributions to the carvings, tilework, and overall reconstruction of the mosque.
Acknowledging its historical and cultural significance, the Kerman Mozaffari Grand Mosque, commonly referred to as Kerman Grand Mosque, was officially registered on Iran’s National Heritage List on March 3, 1961.

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