The Minaret of Mas'ud III at Ghazni


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The minaret of Mas’ud III at Ghazni, Afghanistan, c1100. The capital of the Ghaznevids.
Part of a palace which was very luxurious, with a jeweled golden throne above which the crown was suspended by a golden chain. 380 gold dishes were set out in the hall which was spread with carpets.

A high prismatic octagonal base about 66 ft tall but crowned until 1902 with a high cylindrical tower, in the decoration of which cast terra-cotta is used as well as carved brick for the monumental Kufic inscriptions and small naskhi inscriptions round the panels. Below are geometrical and floral patterns and the sections are separated by wooden platforms as a precaution against earthquakes.

This was part of a tradition of building monumental tomb towers.

The Islamic Art Gallery

The Middle East

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