Juma Mosque

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Friday mosque was always the most significant building in the Muslim city and an object of city planners’ particular concern. Among the famous mosques in Central Asia, Juma mosque of Khiva differs with its archaism and unnecessary traditional nature. This is a huge (45X55meters) room of rectangular form, situated under a flat roof and surrounded by a blank wall, which has three entrances. The mikhrab niche indicating the direction of prayers’ departure is placed in the southern wall. A perpetual twilight reigns in the hall, as the hatches - the slots on the roof can not manage with the lighting of such a large space.
One might find this structure boring and grim, if there was not a significant stroke of the decor - wooden columns. The number of columns in the mosque is more than 200. Different in size, architectural form and time of manufacture, all of them are sharing one feature - a gorgeous filigree carving on wood.
All columns have quite a little conventional physical similarity. This fact tells that it is most likely that all of them were donation of believers for the construction of the temple. A different age of the columns tells the same. Probably, in course of time, the columns which became unusable, were replaced. The oldest of them are expected to refer to X-XIV century. They have pronounced features of ancient Khorezm architecture: canted trunks, small capitals with some trumpet, bases of “kuzagi”, ornamented with descending leaves and many fragments with repeated floral motive.