Mosques of Khiva

Mosques of Khiva

Once in the city were nearly 100 mosques, highlighting the city’s significance as a religious center. Mainly built from mud or clay bricks, they didn’t stand up well to the ravages of time therefore they were continually tapped down and rebuilt on the same site, or heavily restored.

Juma Mosque

The Juma Mosque was one of the most prominent structures of the Middle Ages. The mosque is notable for its unique composition, its symbolic of the ancient mosques in Khorezm. From the outside the mosque’s appearance quite simple however inside it is magnificent, there are 213 columns. 

Hasan Murad Kushbegi Mosque

Hasan Murad Kushbegi Mosque was restored in 1997 but dates from 1800 and was the joint endeavor of Kushbegi and his cousin, Shah Niyaz. Kushbegi was the chief of police in Khiva and collected vital wealth, hence his ability to fund the mosque. 

The mosque is split into two parts. On the northern side, there is a narrow courtyard, summer and winter iwan mosque. In the northeast corner, there is a minaret, built inside the building. In the late 19th and early 20th century, after years of civil conflict, the culture and economy of Fame once Khiva kingdom fell into decline. Fell into disrepair and many of the architectural structures of the time.

Bagbanly Mosque

The Bogbonli mosque also written as Bagbanly Mosque (1809) lies in the southeastern part of Ichan-Kala. Appears to serve as an unofficial monument to the artisans of Khiva. 

Legend has it that the mosque was built on money donated by two horticulturist brothers. The mosque is rectangular in shape and is decorated with domes and carved pillars. A stone plaque east of the entrance portico remembers Pakhlavan Quli, the mosque’s architect, and engraved on the doors is the name of the woodcarver, Ruz Muhammad.

Ak Mosque

The Ak-mosque means “the White-mosque” is located in the ensemble near the Ichan-Kala east gate. Its foundation was laid in 1657, during the reign of the Anush-khan. The modern building, as the inscription on the doors specifies, was built up in 1838-1842. 

It is likely to read the names of Khivan woodcarving masters here: Nur Muhammad, the son of Adin Kalandar, and Kalandar, the son of Seyid Muhammad. The mosque includes a dome, the mosque winter building and ayvan. The white round dome overlapped the premises used for prayers, which has the dimensions 6.33 x 6.35 m. The current building dates from 1838-42, check out the finely carved doors.

Ata Murad Matriza Kushbegi Mosque

Ata Murad Matriza Kushbegi Mosque is possibly the most beautiful one here. This mosque was named after the Chief Minister of Khiva, Maritza, with the title Grandfather (Ata) Sir (Murad) Chief Minister (Koshbegi). The mosque was built in 1800 and again in the 1830s, its slender pillars are reminiscent of chopsticks. 

Although rarely open to the public, this practical mosque is worth a glimpse. Built around a Khivan domestic design, the northern facing aywan stays cool for summer prayers while the inside quarters are used in winter. Domestic doors were considered the ‘face’ of the house and were kept small to ensure that visitors must bow on entering as a sign of respect.

Other sights

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