The New Mosque in Samara is one of the largest mosques in Russia. It was built in the late 1990s in red brick; the main cupola is 13.5 metres in diameter. The minaret rises to a height of 67 meters; the building was designed by an architect from Samara. There is an apple orchard by the walls; the New Mosque should not be confused with the pre-revolutionary mosque dating back to 1891. Islam in Russia List of mosques in Russia List of mosques in Europe
World Heritage Site
A World Heritage Site is a landmark or area, selected by the United Nations Educational and Cultural Organization as having cultural, scientific or other form of significance, is protected by international treaties. The sites are judged important to the collective interests of humanity. To be selected, a World Heritage Site must be an classified landmark, unique in some respect as a geographically and identifiable place having special cultural or physical significance, it may signify a remarkable accomplishment of humanity, serve as evidence of our intellectual history on the planet. The sites are intended for practical conservation for posterity, which otherwise would be subject to risk from human or animal trespassing, unmonitored/uncontrolled/unrestricted access, or threat from local administrative negligence. Sites are demarcated by UNESCO as protected zones; the list is maintained by the international World Heritage Program administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 "states parties" that are elected by their General Assembly.
The programme catalogues and conserves sites of outstanding cultural or natural importance to the common culture and heritage of humanity. Under certain conditions, listed sites can obtain funds from the World Heritage Fund; the program began with the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World's Cultural and Natural Heritage, adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO on 16 November 1972. Since 193 state parties have ratified the convention, making it one of the most recognized international agreements and the world's most popular cultural program; as of July 2018, a total of 1,092 World Heritage Sites exist across 167 countries. Italy, with 54 sites, has the most of any country, followed by China, France, Germany and Mexico. In 1954, the government of Egypt decided to build the new Aswan High Dam, whose resulting future reservoir would inundate a large stretch of the Nile valley containing cultural treasures of ancient Egypt and ancient Nubia. In 1959, the governments of Egypt and Sudan requested UNESCO to assist their countries to protect and rescue the endangered monuments and sites.
In 1960, the Director-General of UNESCO launched an appeal to the member states for an International Campaign to Save the Monuments of Nubia. This appeal resulted in the excavation and recording of hundreds of sites, the recovery of thousands of objects, as well as the salvage and relocation to higher ground of a number of important temples, the most famous of which are the temple complexes of Abu Simbel and Philae; the campaign, which ended in 1980, was considered a success. As tokens of its gratitude to countries which contributed to the campaign's success, Egypt donated four temples: the Temple of Dendur was moved to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Temple of Debod was moved to the Parque del Oeste in Madrid, the Temple of Taffeh was moved to the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden in the Netherlands, the Temple of Ellesyia to Museo Egizio in Turin; the project cost $80 million, about $40 million of, collected from 50 countries. The project's success led to other safeguarding campaigns: saving Venice and its lagoon in Italy, the ruins of Mohenjo-daro in Pakistan, the Borobodur Temple Compounds in Indonesia.
UNESCO initiated, with the International Council on Monuments and Sites, a draft convention to protect the common cultural heritage of humanity. The United States initiated the idea of cultural conservation with nature conservation; the White House conference in 1965 called for a "World Heritage Trust" to preserve "the world's superb natural and scenic areas and historic sites for the present and the future of the entire world citizenry". The International Union for Conservation of Nature developed similar proposals in 1968, they were presented in 1972 to the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm. Under the World Heritage Committee, signatory countries are required to produce and submit periodic data reporting providing the World Heritage Committee with an overview of each participating nation's implementation of the World Heritage Convention and a "snapshot" of current conditions at World Heritage properties. A single text was agreed on by all parties, the "Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage" was adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO on 16 November 1972.
The Convention came into force on 17 December 1975. As of May 2017, it has been ratified by 193 states parties, including 189 UN member states plus the Cook Islands, the Holy See and the State of Palestine. Only four UN member states have not ratified the Convention: Liechtenstein, Nauru and Tuvalu. A country must first list its significant natural sites. A country may not nominate sites. Next, it can place sites selected from that list into a Nomination File; the Nomination File is evaluated by the International Council on Monuments and Sites and the World Conservation Union. These bodies make their recommendations to the World Heritage Committee; the Committee meets once per year to determine whether or not to inscribe each nominated property on the World Heritage List and sometimes defers or refers the decision to request more information from the country which nominated the site. There are ten selection criteria – a site must meet at least one of them to be included on the list
Mosque of Ibn Tulun
The Mosque of Ibn Tulun is located in Cairo, Egypt. It is the oldest mosque in the city surviving in its original form, is the largest mosque in Cairo in terms of land area; the mosque was commissioned by Ahmad ibn Tulun, the Turkic Abbassid governor of Egypt from 868–884 whose rule was characterized by de facto independence. The historian al-Maqrizi lists the mosque's construction start date as 876 AD, the mosque's original inscription slab identifies the date of completion as AH 265; the mosque was constructed on a small hill called Gebel Yashkur, "The Hill of Thanksgiving." One local legend says that it is here that Noah's Ark came to rest after the Deluge, rather than at Mount Ararat. The grand congregational mosque was intended to be the focal point of Ibn Tulun's capital, al-Qata'i, which served as the center of administration for the Tulunid dynasty; the mosque backed onto Ibn Tulun's palace, a door next to the minbar allowed him direct entry to the mosque. Al-Qata'i was razed in the early 10th century AD, the mosque is the only surviving structure.
The mosque was constructed in the Samarran style common with Abbasid constructions. It is constructed around a courtyard, with one covered hall on each of the four sides, the largest being on the side of the qibla, or direction of Mecca; the original mosque had a fountain in the middle of the sahn, covered a gilt dome supported by ten marble columns, round it were 16 marble columns and a marble pavement. Under the dome there was a great basin of marble 4 cubits in diameter with a jet of marble in the centre. A distinctive sabil with a high drum dome was added in the central courtyard at the end of the thirteenth century by Mamluk Sultan Lajin instead of the "fauwara". There is significant controversy over the date of construction of the minaret, which features a helical outer staircase similar to that of the famous minaret in Samarra, it is told that using these stairs one can climb up on a horse. Legend has it that Ibn Tulun himself was accidentally responsible for the design of the structure: while sitting with his officials, he absentmindedly wound a piece of parchment around his finger.
When someone asked him what he was doing, he responded, that he was designing his minaret. Many of the architectural features, point to a construction, in particular the way in which the minaret does not connect well with the main mosque structure, something that would have been averted had the minaret and mosque been built at the same time. Architectural historian Doris Behrens-Abouseif asserts that Sultan Lajin, who restored the mosque in 1296, was responsible for the construction of the current minaret. There are six prayer niches at the mosque, five of which are flat as opposed to the main concave niche; the main niche is the tallest of the six. It was redecorated under Sultan Lajin and contains a top of painted wood, the shahada in a band of glass mosaics and a bottom of marble panels; the same qibla wall features a smaller niche to the left of the main niche. Its stalactite work and naskhi calligraphy indicate an early Mamluk origin; the two prayer niches on the piers flanking the dikka are decorated in the Samrarran style, with one niche containing a unique medallion with a star hanging from a chain.
The Kufic shahada inscriptions on both niches do not mention Ali and were thus made before the Shi'a Fatimids came to power. The westernmost prayer niche, the mihrab of al-Afdal Shahanshah, is a replica of an original kept at Cairo's Museum of Islamic Art, it is ornately decorated in a style with influences from Persia. The Kufic inscription mentions the Fatimid caliph al-Mustansir, on whose orders the niche was made, as well as the Shi'a shahada including Ali as God's wali after declaring the oneness of God and the prophethood of Muhammad. On the pier to the left are the remains of a copy of al-Afdal's mihrab, it differs, however, by referring to Sultan Lajin instead of al-Mustansir, a lack of Ali's name. Prayer niches During the medieval period, several houses were built up against the outside walls of the mosque. Most were demolished in 1928 by the Committee for the Conservation of Arab Monuments, two of the oldest and best-preserved homes were left intact; the "house of the Cretan woman" and the Beit Amna bint Salim, were two separate structures, but a bridge at the third floor level was added at some point, combining them into a single structure.
The house, accessible through the outer walls of the mosque, is open to the public as the Gayer-Anderson Museum, named after the British general R. G.'John' Gayer-Anderson, who lived there until 1942. The mosque has been restored several times; the first known restoration was in 1177 under orders of the Fatimid vizier Badr al-Jamali. Sultan Lajin's restoration of 1296 added several improvements; the mosque was most restored by the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities in 2004. Parts of the James Bond film The Spy; the mosque is featured in the game Serious Sam 3: BFE, forming a significant part of the game's third level. Chahartaqi Ibn Tulun Mosque - entry on Archnet, with full bibliography
A ziggurat is a type of massive structure built in ancient Mesopotamia. It has the form of a terraced compound of successively receding levels. Notable ziggurats include the Great Ziggurat of Ur near Nasiriyah, the Ziggurat of Aqar Quf near Baghdad, the now destroyed Etemenanki in Babylon, Chogha Zanbil in Khūzestān and Sialk. Ziggurats were built by ancient Sumerians, Assyrians, Elamites and Babylonians for local religions, predominantly Mesopotamian religion and Elamite religion; each ziggurat was part of a temple complex. The precursors of the ziggurat were raised platforms that date from the Ubaid period during the sixth millennium; the ziggurats began as a platform, the ziggurat was a mastaba-like structure with a flat top. The sun-baked bricks made up the core of the ziggurat with facings of fired bricks on the outside; each step was smaller than the step below it. The facings were glazed in different colors and may have had astrological significance. Kings sometimes had their names engraved on these glazed bricks.
The number of floors ranged from two to seven. According to archaeologist Harriet Crawford, "It is assumed that the ziggurats supported a shrine, though the only evidence for this comes from Herodotus, physical evidence is nonexistent, it has been suggested by a number of scholars that this shrine was the scene of the sacred marriage, the central rite of the great new year festival. Herodotus describes the furnishing of the shrine on top of the ziggurat at Babylon and says it contained a great golden couch on which a woman spent the night alone; the god Marduk was said to come and sleep in his shrine. The likelihood of such a shrine being found is remote. Erosion has reduced the surviving ziggurats to a fraction of their original height, but textual evidence may yet provide more facts about the purpose of these shrines. In the present state of our knowledge it seems reasonable to adopt as a working hypothesis the suggestion that the ziggurats developed out of the earlier temples on platforms and that small shrines stood on the highest stages..."
Access to the shrine would have been by a series of ramps on one side of the ziggurat or by a spiral ramp from base to summit. The Mesopotamian ziggurats were not places for public worship or ceremonies, they were believed to be dwelling places for the gods and each city had its own patron god. Only priests were permitted on the ziggurat or in the rooms at its base, it was their responsibility to care for the gods and attend to their needs; the priests were powerful members of Sumerian and Assyro-Babylonian society. One of the best-preserved ziggurats is Chogha Zanbil in western Iran; the Sialk ziggurat, in Kashan, Iran, is the oldest known ziggurat, dating to the early 3rd millennium BCE. Ziggurat designs ranged from simple bases upon which a temple sat, to marvels of mathematics and construction which spanned several terraced stories and were topped with a temple. An example of a simple ziggurat is the White Temple of Uruk, in ancient Sumer; the ziggurat itself is the base. Its purpose is to get the temple closer to the heavens, provide access from the ground to it via steps.
The Mesopotamians believed that these pyramid temples connected earth. In fact, the ziggurat at Babylon was known as Etemenankia or "House of the Platform between Heaven and Earth". An example of an extensive and massive ziggurat is the Marduk ziggurat, of Etemenanki, of ancient Babylon. Not much of the base is left of this massive 91 meter tall structure, yet archeological findings and historical accounts put this tower at seven multicolored tiers, topped with a temple of exquisite proportions; the temple is thought to have been painted and maintained an indigo color, matching the tops of the tiers. It is known that there were three staircases leading to the temple, two of which were thought to have only ascended half the ziggurat's height. Etemenanki, the name for the structure, is Sumerian and means "temple of the foundation of heaven and earth"; the date of its original construction is unknown, with suggested dates ranging from the fourteenth to the ninth century BCE, with textual evidence suggesting it existed in the second millennium.
According to Herodotus, at the top of each ziggurat was a shrine, although none of these shrines have survived. One practical function of the ziggurats was a high place on which the priests could escape rising water that annually inundated lowlands and flooded for hundreds of kilometers, for example, the 1967 flood. Another practical function of the ziggurat was for security. Since the shrine was accessible only by way of three stairways, a small number of guards could prevent non-priests from spying on the rituals at the shrine on top of the ziggurat, such as initiation rituals such as the Eleusinian mysteries, cooking of sacrificial food and burning of carcasses of sacrificial animals; each ziggurat was part of a temple complex that included a courtyard, storage rooms and living quarters, around which a city was built. Mound Pyramid Stupa Sumer Citations Sources UNESCO Heritage site for Iran. Article on the status of Sialk ziggurat, Iran
Iraq the Republic of Iraq, is a country in Western Asia, bordered by Turkey to the north, Iran to the east, Kuwait to the southeast, Saudi Arabia to the south, Jordan to the southwest and Syria to the west. The capital, largest city, is Baghdad. Iraq is home to diverse ethnic groups including Arabs, Assyrians, Shabakis, Armenians, Mandeans and Kawliya. Around 95% of the country's 37 million citizens are Muslims, with Christianity, Yarsan and Mandeanism present; the official languages of Iraq are Kurdish. Iraq has a coastline measuring 58 km on the northern Persian Gulf and encompasses the Mesopotamian Alluvial Plain, the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range and the eastern part of the Syrian Desert. Two major rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, run south through Iraq and into the Shatt al-Arab near the Persian Gulf; these rivers provide Iraq with significant amounts of fertile land. The region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers known as Mesopotamia, is referred to as the cradle of civilisation.
It was here that mankind first began to read, create laws and live in cities under an organised government—notably Uruk, from which "Iraq" is derived. The area has been home to successive civilisations since the 6th millennium BC. Iraq was the centre of the Akkadian, Sumerian and Babylonian empires, it was part of the Median, Hellenistic, Sassanid, Rashidun, Abbasid, Mongol, Safavid and Ottoman empires. The country today known as Iraq was a region of the Ottoman Empire until the partition of the Ottoman Empire in the 20th century, it was made up of three provinces, called vilayets in the Ottoman language: Mosul Vilayet, Baghdad Vilayet, Basra Vilayet. In April 1920 the British Mandate of Mesopotamia was created under the authority of the League of Nations. A British-backed monarchy joining these vilayets into one Kingdom was established in 1921 under Faisal I of Iraq; the Hashemite Kingdom of Iraq gained independence from the UK in 1932. In 1958, the monarchy was overthrown and the Iraqi Republic created.
Iraq was controlled by the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party from 1968 until 2003. After an invasion by the United States and its allies in 2003, Saddam Hussein's Ba'ath Party was removed from power, multi-party parliamentary elections were held in 2005; the US presence in Iraq ended in 2011, but the Iraqi insurgency continued and intensified as fighters from the Syrian Civil War spilled into the country. Out of the insurgency came a destructive group calling itself ISIL, which took large parts of the north and west, it has since been defeated. Disputes over the sovereignty of Iraqi Kurdistan continue. A referendum about the full sovereignty of Iraqi Kurdistan was held on 25 September 2017. On 9 December 2017, then-Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory over ISIL after the group lost its territory in Iraq. Iraq is a federal parliamentary republic consisting of one autonomous region; the country's official religion is Islam. Culturally, Iraq has a rich heritage and celebrates the achievements of its past in both pre-Islamic as well as post-Islamic times and is known for its poets.
Its painters and sculptors are among the best in the Arab world, some of them being world-class as well as producing fine handicrafts, including rugs and carpets. Iraq is a founding member of the UN as well as of the Arab League, OIC, Non-Aligned Movement and the IMF; the Arabic name العراق al-ʿIrāq has been in use since before the 6th century. There are several suggested origins for the name. One dates to the Sumerian city of Uruk and is thus of Sumerian origin, as Uruk was the Akkadian name for the Sumerian city of Urug, containing the Sumerian word for "city", UR. An Arabic folk etymology for the name is "well-watered. During the medieval period, there was a region called ʿIrāq ʿArabī for Lower Mesopotamia and ʿIrāq ʿAjamī, for the region now situated in Central and Western Iran; the term included the plain south of the Hamrin Mountains and did not include the northernmost and westernmost parts of the modern territory of Iraq. Prior to the middle of the 19th century, the term Eyraca Arabic was used to describe Iraq.
The term Sawad was used in early Islamic times for the region of the alluvial plain of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, contrasting it with the arid Arabian desert. As an Arabic word, عراق means "hem", "shore", "bank", or "edge", so that the name by folk etymology came to be interpreted as "the escarpment", viz. at the south and east of the Jazira Plateau, which forms the northern and western edge of the "al-Iraq arabi" area. The Arabic pronunciation is. In English, it is either or, the American Heritage Dictionary, the Random House Dictionary; the pronunciation is heard in US media. In accordance with the 2005 Constitution, the official name of the state is the "Republic of Iraq". Between 65,000 BC and 35,000 BC northern Iraq was home to a Neanderthal culture, archaeological remains of which have been discovered at Shanidar Cave This same region is the location of a number of pre-Neolithic cemeteries, dating from 11,000 BC. Since 10,000 BC, Iraq was one of centres of a Caucasoid Neolithic culture (k
Archive.today is an archive site which stores snapshots of web pages. It retrieves one page at a time similar to WebCite, smaller than 50MB each, but with support for modern sites such as Google Maps and Twitter. Archive.is uses headless browsing to record what embedded resources need to be captured to provide a high-quality memento, creates a PNG image to provide a static and non-interactive visualization of the representation. Archive.today can capture individual pages in response to explicit user requests. Since July 2013, archive.is supports the Memento Project application programming interface. Archive.today was founded in 2012. The site branded itself as archive.today, but in May 2015 changed the primary mirror to archive.is. In January 2019, it began to deprecate the archive.is domain in favor of the archive.today mirror. In March 2019 the site was blocked by several Australian internet providers in the aftermath of the Christchurch mosque shootings in an attempt to limit distribution of the footage of the attack.
According to GreatFire.org, archive.is has been blocked in China since March 2016, archive.li since September 2017, archive.fo since July 2018. On July 21, 2015, the operators blocked access to the service from all Finnish IP addresses, stating on Twitter that they did this in order to avoid escalating a dispute they had with the Finnish government. In Russia, only HTTP access is possible. CloudFlare's 188.8.131.52 does not resolve archive.is domains. Archive.is records only text and images, excluding video, xml and other non-static content. It keeps track of the history of snapshots saved, returning to the user a request for confirmation before adding a new snapshot of an saved Internet address; the research toolbar enables advanced keywords operators. A couple of quotation marks address the search to an exact sequence of keywords present in the title or in the body of the webpage, whereas the insite operator restricts it to a specific Internet domain. Once a web page is archived, it cannot be deleted directly by any Internet user.
Nevertherless, archive.is controls or deletes web pages saved some days before, without any policy or right of discussion and appeal. While saving a dynamic list, archive.is searchbox shows only a result that links the previous and the following section of the list. The other web pages saved are filtered, sometimes may be found by one of their occurrences. Digital preservation Internet Archive Link rot Perma.cc Wayback Machine Web archiving WebCite WP:Link rot Official website "Offline blog"
Mesopotamia is a historical region of Western Asia situated within the Tigris–Euphrates river system, in modern days corresponding to most of Iraq, parts of Northern Saudi Arabia, the eastern parts of Syria, Southeastern Turkey, regions along the Turkish–Syrian and Iran–Iraq borders. The Sumerians and Akkadians dominated Mesopotamia from the beginning of written history to the fall of Babylon in 539 BC, when it was conquered by the Achaemenid Empire, it fell to Alexander the Great in 332 BC, after his death, it became part of the Greek Seleucid Empire. Around 150 BC, Mesopotamia was under the control of the Parthian Empire. Mesopotamia became a battleground between the Romans and Parthians, with western parts of Mesopotamia coming under ephemeral Roman control. In AD 226, the eastern regions of Mesopotamia fell to the Sassanid Persians; the division of Mesopotamia between Roman and Sassanid Empires lasted until the 7th century Muslim conquest of Persia of the Sasanian Empire and Muslim conquest of the Levant from Byzantines.
A number of neo-Assyrian and Christian native Mesopotamian states existed between the 1st century BC and 3rd century AD, including Adiabene and Hatra. Mesopotamia is the site of the earliest developments of the Neolithic Revolution from around 10,000 BC, it has been identified as having "inspired some of the most important developments in human history including the invention of the wheel, the planting of the first cereal crops and the development of cursive script, mathematics and agriculture". The regional toponym Mesopotamia comes from the ancient Greek root words μέσος "middle" and ποταμός "river" and translates to " between two/the rivers", it is used throughout the Greek Septuagint to translate the Aramaic equivalent Naharaim. An earlier Greek usage of the name Mesopotamia is evident from The Anabasis of Alexander, written in the late 2nd century AD, but refers to sources from the time of Alexander the Great. In the Anabasis, Mesopotamia was used to designate the land east of the Euphrates in north Syria.
The Aramaic term biritum/birit narim corresponded to a similar geographical concept. The term Mesopotamia was more applied to all the lands between the Euphrates and the Tigris, thereby incorporating not only parts of Syria but almost all of Iraq and southeastern Turkey; the neighbouring steppes to the west of the Euphrates and the western part of the Zagros Mountains are often included under the wider term Mesopotamia. A further distinction is made between Northern or Upper Mesopotamia and Southern or Lower Mesopotamia. Upper Mesopotamia known as the Jazira, is the area between the Euphrates and the Tigris from their sources down to Baghdad. Lower Mesopotamia is the area from Baghdad to the Persian Gulf and includes Kuwait and parts of western Iran. In modern academic usage, the term Mesopotamia also has a chronological connotation, it is used to designate the area until the Muslim conquests, with names like Syria and Iraq being used to describe the region after that date. It has been argued that these euphemisms are Eurocentric terms attributed to the region in the midst of various 19th-century Western encroachments.
Mesopotamia encompasses the land between the Euphrates and Tigris rivers, both of which have their headwaters in the Taurus Mountains. Both rivers are fed by numerous tributaries, the entire river system drains a vast mountainous region. Overland routes in Mesopotamia follow the Euphrates because the banks of the Tigris are steep and difficult; the climate of the region is semi-arid with a vast desert expanse in the north which gives way to a 15,000-square-kilometre region of marshes, mud flats, reed banks in the south. In the extreme south, the Euphrates and the Tigris empty into the Persian Gulf; the arid environment which ranges from the northern areas of rain-fed agriculture to the south where irrigation of agriculture is essential if a surplus energy returned on energy invested is to be obtained. This irrigation is aided by a high water table and by melting snows from the high peaks of the northern Zagros Mountains and from the Armenian Highlands, the source of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers that give the region its name.
The usefulness of irrigation depends upon the ability to mobilize sufficient labor for the construction and maintenance of canals, this, from the earliest period, has assisted the development of urban settlements and centralized systems of political authority. Agriculture throughout the region has been supplemented by nomadic pastoralism, where tent-dwelling nomads herded sheep and goats from the river pastures in the dry summer months, out into seasonal grazing lands on the desert fringe in the wet winter season; the area is lacking in building stone, precious metals and timber, so has relied upon long-distance trade of agricultural products to secure these items from outlying areas. In the marshlands to the south of the area, a complex water-borne fishing culture has existed since prehistoric times, has added to the cultural mix. Periodic breakdowns in the cultural system have occurred for a number of reasons; the demands for labor has from time to time led to population increases that push the limits of the ecological carrying capacity, should a period of climatic instability ensue, collapsing central government a