June 23, 2016

2634 RUSSIA (Saint Petersburg) - Saint Petersburg Mosque

When was opened in 1913, the Saint Petersburg Mosque was the largest mosque in Europe outside Turkey, its minarets 49 meters in height and the dome is 39 meters high. The founding stone was laid in 1910 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the reign of Abdul Ahat Khan in Bukhara. By that time, the Muslim community of the Russian then-capital exceeded 8,000 people. The architect Nikolai Vasilyev patterned the mosque after Gur-e Amir, the tomb of Tamerlane in Samarkand. Its construction was completed by 1921.

The location of the mosque was symbolic, sited opposite the Peter and Paul Fortress, in the city centre. The permission to purchase the site was given by Emperor Nicholas II in Peterhof on 3 July 1907. That autumn, the committee approved the project by architect Nikolai Vasilyev, the engineer Stepan Krichinsky, and construction was overseen by academic Alexander von Hohen. The building facade was made by combining both oriental ornaments and turquoise blue mosaic.

The walls were made with grey granite and the dome and both minarets (tower) are covered with mosaic ceramics of sky-light-blue colour. Skilled craftsmen from Central Asia took part working on the mosque. The facades are decorated with sayings from Koran using the characteristic Arabian calligraphy. Internal columns are made from green marble. Women pray on the first floor, above the western part of the hall. The mosque was covered by huge special made carpets woven by the Central Asian craftsmen.

About the stamps
The first stamp is part of the series Wild goats and rams, about which I wrote here. The second and the third stamps are part of a series dedicated to Russian Kremlins, about which I wrote here. The last stamp is part of a definitive series about which I wrote here.

Saint Petersburg Mosque - Wikipedia

Sender: Irina (postcrossing) RU-2284902
Sent from Saint Petersburg (Saint Petersburg / Russia), on 16.02.2014  

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