Masjid-i Jami' (Sanandaj)
Sanandaj, Iran
The Great Mosque of Sanandaj, also known as the Dar al-Ihsan Mosque, is a large congregational mosque in Sanandaj, the capital of Kurdistan Province in Iran. It is located along what is today one of the main arterial streets of the city, Khiyaban-i Imam, to the northwest of the town center and grand bazaar. Rhyming couplets inscribed on the walls of the courtyard iwans date the beginning of construction on the mosque to 1227 AH (1812 CE) and the completion of construction to 1228 AH (1813 CE). The original patron of the mosque was Aman-Allah Khan I, Wali of Ardalan (r. 1799-1824/1214-1250 AH), a Kurdish governor under Fath 'Ali Shah.

The mosque comprises a large rectangular courtyard adjoining a covered prayer hall. The courtyard also served as a madrasa. The entrance to the mosque is through an iwan-portal on the southern facade of the courtyard. Notably, a large iwan also opens onto the street at the western end of this wall, fronting the covered prayer hall on its qibla side.

The entrance to the courtyard leads onto an octagonal vestibule and then onto the back of a shallow iwan that opens onto the south side of the courtyard. Three shallow iwans open onto the courtyard on its southern, eastern, and northern sides. Between these iwans are narrow corridors giving access to spaces behind the iwans. On the west side of the courtyard, a larger iwan flanked by two narrower halls opens onto the covered prayer hall. Two large minarets rise above the western iwan.

The prayer hall includes 24 stone columns in six rows of four columns. These support 35 domed bays. Windows line the western wall, allowing light into the space. 

Haft-rangi (multi-colored) tile revetments adorn the facades and interiors of the courtyard iwans and spandrels on the street facade.


Ḥājjī-Qāsimī, Kāmbīz, ed. Ganjnāmah-i farhang-i ās̲ār-i miʻmārī-i Islāmī-i Īrān. Vol. 7, 182-187 [English text: 14-19]. Tehran: Dānishgāh-i Shahīd Bihishtī, 1996.

Ritter, Markus. Moscheen und Madrasabauten in Iran 1785-1848: Architektur zwischen Rückgriff und Neuerung, 778-797. Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2006.

 منابع فارسى

كامبيز حاجي قاسمى. گنجنامه فرهنگ آثار معمارى اسلامى ايران. دفتر هفتم. مساجد جامع. بخش اول. تهران: دانشگاه شهيد بهشتى, 1383.  ص 187-182

Sanandaj, Iran
1812-1813/1227-1228 AH
Style Periods
Variant Names
مسجد جامع سنندج
Masjid-i Jami'-i Sanandaj
Building Usages