Imamzadah Ja'far (Isfahan)
Isfahan, Iran
An inscription with final numeral missing dates this freestanding octagonal tomb tower, built for a descendent of the fifth Imam, to the 1320's. The high quality of craft is noteworthy as is the use of proportions more slender than those of earlier tomb towers.

Upon a low base, the fired brick drum is detailed on each of the eight sides with a recessed arch panel within a recessed rectangular frame. On the north, south, and west faces the panels once contained an opening, now filled in, capped by a panel of tile mosaic. A recent arched doorway pierces the arched panel of the entrance side, the remaining areas of which are faced with tile mosaic.

Two bands of tile mosaic inscription terminate the octagonal drum, the upper frieze bending outward at the top to meet a recently reconstructed overhanging cornice. The dome, set back from the exterior edge of the octagonal drum and low in profile, is not easily visible. Much of the mosaic faience is recent restoration, including the tile revetment of the dome.


Blair, Sheila S. and Jonathan M. Bloom. The Art and Architecture of Islam. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1994.

Wilber, Donald N. The Architecture of Islamic Iran. New York: Greenwood Press, 1969.

Additional information:

Record updates:

  • August 27, 2018 (AKDC staff): edited data (edited alternate names according to new standards). 
Isfahan, Iran
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Associated Names
1320/719 AH
Style Periods
Variant Names
امام زاده جعفر
Imamzadah Ja'far
Building Usages