A mosque is a place of worship for followers of Islam. There are strict and detailed requirements in Sunni jurisprudence for a place of worship to be considered a mosque, many mosques have elaborate domes and prayer halls, in varying styles of architecture. Mosques originated on the Arabian Peninsula, but are now found in all inhabited continents, the mosque serves as a place where Muslims can come together for salat as well as a center for information, social welfare, and dispute settlement. The imam leads the congregation in prayer, the first mosque in the world is often considered to be the area around the Kaaba in Mecca now known as the Masjid al-Haram. Others regard the first mosque in history to be the Quba Mosque in present-day Medina since it was the first structure built by Muhammad upon his emigration from Mecca in 622. The Islamic Prophet Muhammad went on to another mosque in Medina. Built on the site of his home, Muhammad participated in the construction of the mosque himself and helped pioneer the concept of the mosque as the focal point of the Islamic city.
The Masjid al-Nabawi introduced some of the still common in todays mosques, including the niche at the front of the prayer space known as the mihrab. The Masjid al-Nabawi was constructed with a courtyard, a motif common among mosques built since then. Mosques had been built in Iraq and North Africa by the end of the 7th century, the Imam Husayn Shrine in Karbala is reportedly one of the oldest mosques in Iraq, although its present form – typical of Persian architecture – only goes back to the 11th century. The shrine, while operating as a mosque, remains one of the holiest sites for Shia Muslims, as it honors the death of the third Shia imam. The Mosque of Amr ibn al-As was reportedly the first mosque in Egypt, serving as a religious, like the Imam Husayn Shrine, nothing of its original structure remains. With the Shia Fatimid Caliphate, mosques throughout Egypt evolved to include schools, hospitals and it was the first to incorporate a square minaret and includes naves akin to a basilica. Those features can be found in Andalusian mosques, including the Grand Mosque of Cordoba, some elements of Visigothic architecture, like horseshoe arches, were infused into the mosque architecture of Spain and the Maghreb.
The first mosque in East Asia was reportedly established in the 8th century in Xian, the Great Mosque of Xian, whose current building dates from the 18th century, does not replicate the features often associated with mosques elsewhere. Indeed, minarets were initially prohibited by the state, mosques in western China were more likely to incorporate elements, like domes and minarets, traditionally seen in mosques elsewhere. In turn, the Javanese style influenced the styles of mosques in Indonesias Austronesian neighbors—Malaysia, Muslim empires were instrumental in the evolution and spread of mosques. Although mosques were first established in India during the 7th century, reflecting their Timurid origins, Mughal-style mosques included onion domes, pointed arches, and elaborate circular minarets, features common in the Persian and Central Asian styles
Islamic studies is the academic study of Islam and Islamic culture. Islamic studies can be seen under at least two perspectives, From a secular or neutral point of view, Islamic studies do academic research on Islam and Islamic culture independent of faith. In this respect, Islamic studies neither engage in shaping Muslim faith by making Islamic theology, from a Muslim point of view, Islamic studies do academic research on Islam and Islamic culture, but from a faithful perspective. Historically, both perspectives had been separated by the separation of the Western and Islamic worlds. They differed in their understanding of academia and were organized either in universities or madrasas, scholars of Islamic studies are called by their special field of study, as e. g. historian, sociologist, or political scientist, or in general a scholar of Islamic studies. The professional title Islamicist is dated, scholars of Islamic studies from a faithful point of view can be historians etc. too, yet they can be called Muslim scholar, teacher of religion, cleric, or Ulama.
In a Muslim context, Islamic studies is the term for the Islamic sciences. Specialists in the discipline apply methods adapted from several fields, ranging from Biblical studies and classical philology to modern history, legal history. Scholars in the field of academic Islamic studies are often referred to as Islamicists, in fact, some of the more traditional Western universities still confer degrees in Arabic and Islamic studies under the primary title of Oriental studies. This is the case, for example, at the University of Oxford, the first attempt to understand Islam as a topic of modern scholarship was within the context of 19th-century Christian European Oriental studies. Some orientalists praised the tolerance of Islamic countries in contrast with the Christian West. In the 2nd half of the 19th century and historical approaches were predominant, leading in the field were German researchers like Theodore Nöldeke s study on the history of the Quran, or Ignaz Goldziher s work on the prophetic tradition.
Western orientalists and Muslim scholars alike preferred to interpret the history of Islam in a conservative way and they did not question the traditional account of the early time of Islam, of Muhammad and how the Quran was written. To understand the history of Islam provides the basis to understand all aspects of Islam. Themes of special interest are, Historiography of early Islam History of the Quran Historicity of Muhammad Early Muslim conquests Kalam is one of the sciences of Islam. In Arabic, the word means discussion and refers to the Islamic tradition of seeking theological principles through dialectic, a scholar of kalam is referred to as a mutakallim. Islamic eschatology Sufism is a tradition of Islam based on the pursuit of spiritual truth as it is gradually revealed to the heart. It might be referred to as Islamic mysticism, while other branches of Islam generally focus on exoteric aspects of religion, Sufism is mainly focused on the direct perception of truth or God through mystic practices based on divine love
Iman in Islamic theology denotes a believers faith in the metaphysical aspects of Islam. Its most simple definition is the belief in the six articles of faith, the term Iman has been delineated in both the Quran as well as the Hadith of Gabriel. According to the Quran, Iman must be accompanied by righteous deeds, in the Hadith of Gabriel, Iman in addition to Islam and Ihsan form the three dimensions of the Islamic religion. There exists a debate both within and outside Islam on the link between faith and reason in religion, and the importance of either. Several scholars contend that faith and reason spring from the source and hence must be harmonious. In Arabic, pronounced means faith and it is the verbal noun of آمَنَ to believe. In a hadith, Muhammad defined iman as a knowledge in the heart, a voicing with the tongue, Faith is confidence in a truth which is real. When people have confidence, they submit themselves to that truth, hamiduddin Farahi, while explaining the meaning of Imān in his exegesis, The root of imān is amn.
It is used in various shades of meaning, one of its derivatives is mumin, which is among the noble names of Allah because He gives peace to those who seek His refuge. This word is an ancient religious term, another similar narration ascribed to Muhammad is, Ibn Abbas narrates that the Angel Jibril once asked the Prophet, Tell me what is Iman. Jibril asked him, If I do all this will I be with Iman, the Prophet said, When you have done all of this, you will be having Iman. It is assumed that the essential Iman consists of the first 3 items, in the Quran, Iman is one of the 10 qualities which cause one to be the recipient of Gods mercy and reward. The Quran states that faith can grow with remembrance of God, the Quran states that nothing in this world should be dearer to a true believer than faith. Muhammad is reported to have said that he gained sweetness of faith who was pleased to accept God as Lord, Islam as religion and he said that no one can be a true believer unless he loves the Prophet more than his children and relatives.
At another instance, he has remarked that it is love with God. Amin Ahsan Islahi, an exegete of the Quran has clarified the nature of this love. It is because of love that a person, in every sphere of life, gives priority to this viewpoint. Islahi and Maududi both have inferred that the Quranic comparison of a word and a bad word in Chapter 14 is actually a comparison of faith
Salah, called namāz in some languages, is one of the Five Pillars in the faith of Islam and an obligatory religious duty for every Muslim. It is a physical and spiritual act of worship that is observed five times every day at prescribed times, in this ritual, the worshiper starts standing, prostrates themself, and concludes while sitting on the ground. During each posture, the worshiper recites or reads certain verses, the word salah is commonly translated as prayer but this definition might be confusing. Muslims use the words dua or supplication when referring to the definition of prayers which is reverent petitions made to God. Salah is preceded by ritual ablution, Salah consists of the repetition of a unit called a rakʿah consisting of prescribed actions and words. The number of obligatory rakaʿāt varies from two to four according to the time of day or other circumstances, prayer is obligatory for all Muslims except those who are prepubescent, are menstruating, or are experiencing bleeding in the 40 days after childbirth.
Every movement in the salat is accompanied by the takbir except the standing between the ruku and sujud, and the ending which has a derivation of the Muslim greeting As-salamu alaykum, Salah is an Arabic word whose basic meaning is bowing, worship, prayer. In its English usage, the reference of the word is almost always confined to the Muslim formal, Muslims themselves use several terms to refer to salah depending on their language or culture. In many parts of the world, including many non-Arab countries such as Indonesia, the other major term is the Persian word namāz, used by speakers of the Indo-Iranian languages, as well as Turkish, Chinese and Albanian. In North Caucasian languages, the term is lamaz in Chechen and this is a book, there is no doubt in it, a guidance for righteous. Those who believe in unseen and offer Salah and spend from what we have given to them, and those who believe in what We have revealed to thee and what We revealed before thee, and on hereafter they believe. They are on guidance from their lord and they are successful, and offer Salah and pay Zakah and bow along those who bow.
Guard your Salah and middle Salah, and stand before God devoutly obedient, if you fear on foot or riding, when you become secure remember God as he has taught you that which you did not know previously. And offer Salah at the two ends of day and at the approach of night, indeed good deeds remove bad deeds, offer Salah at the decline of the day until the darkness of night, and Quran at dawn, indeed Quran at dawn ever is a witness. And at night pray Tahajjud an extra for thee, it is expected that your lord raise you to praised station. ) Say call God or call Merciful, by whomever you call, He has good names, and offer Salah and pay Zakah and obey Messenger so that you may receive mercy. And recite that is revealed to you as a book and offer Salah, indeed Salah prohibits immorality and wrongdoing, and remembrance of God is great, ) The chief purpose of salah is to act as a persons communication with and remembrance of God. By reciting The Opening, the first sura of the Quran, as required in daily worship, the worshiper can stand before God and praise Him, under the Hanbali School of thought, a person who doesnt pray five times a day is an unbeliever
Madrasa is the Arabic word for any type of educational institution, whether secular or religious. The word is variously transliterated madrasah, madrassa, medrese, in the West, the word usually refers to a specific type of religious school or college for the study of the Islamic religion, though this may not be the only subject studied. In countries like India, not all students in madrasas are Muslims, the word madrasah derives from the triconsonantal Semitic root د-ر-س D-R-S to learn, through the wazn مفعل, mafʻal, meaning a place where something is done. Therefore, madrasah literally means a place where learning and studying take place, for example, in the Ottoman Empire during the Early Modern Period, madaris had lower schools and specialised schools where the students became known as danişmends. The usual Arabic word for a university, however, is جامعة, the Hebrew cognate midrasha connotes the meaning of a place of learning, the related term midrash literally refers to study or learning, but has acquired mystical and religious connotations.
However, in English, the term usually refers to the specifically Islamic institutions. A regular curriculum includes courses in Arabic, sharīʻah, mantiq, in the Ottoman Empire, during the Early Modern Period, the study of hadiths was introduced by Süleyman I. Depending on the demands, some madaris offer additional advanced courses in Arabic literature and other foreign languages, as well as science. Ottoman madaris along with religious teachings taught styles of writing, syntax, composition, natural sciences, political sciences, people of all ages attend, and many often move on to becoming imams. The certificate of an ʻālim, for example, requires approximately twelve years of study, a good number of the ḥuffāẓ are the product of the madaris. The madaris resemble colleges, where people take evening classes, an important function of the madaris is to admit orphans and poor children in order to provide them with education and training. Madaris may enroll female students, they study separately from the men, the term Islamic education means education in the light of Islam itself, which is rooted in the teachings of the Quran - holy book of Muslims.
Islamic education and Muslim education are not the same, because Islamic education has epistemological integration which is founded on Tawhid - Oneness or monotheism. The first institute of education was at the estate of Hazrat Zaid bin Arkam near a hill called Safa, where Hazrat Muhammad was the teacher. After Hijrah the madrasa of Suffa was established in Madina on the east side of the Al-Masjid an-Nabawi mosque, ubada ibn as-Samit was appointed there by Hazrat Muhammad as teacher and among the students. In the curriculum of the madrasa, there were teachings of The Quran, The Hadith, tajweed, treatises of first aid, there were trainings of horse-riding, art of war and calligraphy, athletics and martial arts. The first part of madrasa based education is estimated from the first day of nabuwwat to the first portion of the Umaiya caliphate and it was founded by Fāṭimah al-Fihrī, the daughter of a wealthy merchant named Muḥammad al-Fihrī. This was followed by the establishment of al-Azhar in 959 in Cairo, niẓām al-Mulk, who would be murdered by the Assassins, created a system of state madaris in various ʻAbbāsid cities at the end of the 11th century
Islamic culture is a term primarily used in secular academia to describe the cultural practices common to historically Islamic people. The early forms of Muslim culture were predominantly Arab, Islamic culture generally includes all the practices which have developed around the religion of Islam, including Quranic ones such as prayer and non-Quranic such as divisions of the world in Islam. It includes as the Baul tradition of Bengal, and facilitated the conversion of most of Bengal. There are variations in the application of Islamic beliefs in different cultures, Islamic culture is itself a contentious term. Muslims live in different countries and communities, and it can be difficult to isolate points of cultural unity among Muslims. Anthropologists and historians nevertheless study Islam as an aspect of, and influence on, the noted historian of Islam, Marshall Hodgson, noted the above difficulty of religious versus secular academic usage of the words Islamic and Muslim in his three-volume work, The Venture Of Islam.
He proposed to resolve it by using these terms for purely religious phenomena. However, his distinction has not been widely adopted, early Muslim literature is in Arabic, as that was the language of Muhammads communities in Mecca and Medina. As the early history of the Muslim community was focused on establishing the religion of Islam, see the articles on Quran and Sirah, which formed the earliest literature of the Muslim community. With the establishment of the Umayyad empire, see The Book of One Thousand and One Nights. While having no content, this secular literature was spread by the Arabs all over their empires. By the time of the Abbasid empire, Persian had become the language of Muslim World. Much of the most famous Muslim literature was written in Persian, from Rumi in Anatolia, to Nizami in the Caucasus, to Jami in Samarkand, from the 11th century, there was a growing body of Islamic literature in the Turkic languages. However, for centuries to come the official language in Turkish-speaking areas would remain Persian, in Anatolia, with the advent of the Seljuks, the practise and usage of Persian in the region would be strongly revived.
A branch of the Seljuks, the Sultanate of Rum, took Persian language and they adopted Persian language as the official language of the empire. The Ottomans, which can roughly be seen as their eventual successors, after a period of several centuries, Ottoman Turkish had developed towards a fully accepted language of literature, which was even able to satisfy the demands of a scientific presentation. However, the number of Persian and Arabic loanwords contained in those works increased at times up to 88%. With the establishment of the Ottoman Empire, Ottoman Turkish grew in importance in both poetry and prose becoming, by the beginning of the 18th century, the language of the Empire
Five Pillars of Islam
The Five Pillars of Islam are five basic acts in Islam, considered mandatory by believers and are the foundation of Muslim life. They are summarized in the hadith of Gabriel. The Shia and Sunni both agree on the details for the performance and practice of these acts, but the Shia do not refer to them by the same name. They make up Muslim life, concern for the needy, self-purification, shahada is a declaration of faith and trust that professes that there is only one God and that Muhammad is Gods messenger. It is a set statement normally recited in Arabic, lā ʾilāha ʾillā-llāhu muḥammadun rasūlu-llāh There is no god but God Muhammad is the messenger of God and it is essential to utter it to become a Muslim and to convert to Islam. Salat consists of five daily prayers according to the Sunna, the names are according to the times, Dhuhr, ʿAṣr, Maghrib. All of these prayers are recited while facing in the direction of the Kaaba in Mecca, Muslims must wash before prayer, this washing is called wudu.
The prayer is accompanied by a series of set positions including, bowing with hands on knees, a Muslim may perform their prayer anywhere, such as in offices and fields. However, the mosque is the more preferable place for prayers because the mosque allows for fellowship, Zakāt or alms-giving is the practice of charitable giving based on accumulated wealth. The word zakāt can be defined as purification and growth because it allows an individual to achieve balance, the principle of knowing that all things belong to God is essential to purification and growth. Zakāt is obligatory for all Muslims who are able to do so and it is the personal responsibility of each Muslim to ease the economic hardship of others and to strive towards eliminating inequality. Zakāt consists of spending a portion of wealth for the benefit of the poor or needy. A Muslim may donate more as an act of voluntary charity, There are five principles that should be followed when giving the zakāt, The giver must declare to God his intention to give the zakāt.
The zakāt must be paid on the day that it is due, after the offering, the payer must not exaggerate on spending his money more than usual means. This means if one is he or she needs to pay a portion of their income. If a person does not have money, they should compensate for it in different ways, such as good deeds. The zakāt must be distributed in the community from which it was taken, three types of fasting are recognized by the Quran, Ritual fasting, fasting as compensation for repentance, and ascetic fasting. Ritual fasting is an act during the month of Ramadan
The Quran is the central religious text of Islam, which Muslims believe to be a revelation from God. It is widely regarded as the finest work in classical Arabic literature, the Quran is divided into chapters, which are divided into verses. The word Quran occurs some 70 times in the text of the Quran, although different names, according to the traditional narrative, several companions of Muhammad served as scribes and were responsible for writing down the revelations. Shortly after Muhammads death, the Quran was compiled by his companions who wrote down and these codices had differences that motivated the Caliph Uthman to establish a standard version now known as Uthmans codex, which is generally considered the archetype of the Quran known today. There are, variant readings, with minor differences in meaning. The Quran assumes familiarity with major narratives recounted in the Biblical scriptures and it summarizes some, dwells at length on others and, in some cases, presents alternative accounts and interpretations of events.
The Quran describes itself as a book of guidance and it sometimes offers detailed accounts of specific historical events, and it often emphasizes the moral significance of an event over its narrative sequence. The Quran is used along with the hadith to interpret sharia law, during prayers, the Quran is recited only in Arabic. Someone who has memorized the entire Quran is called a hafiz, some Muslims read Quranic ayah with elocution, which is often called tajwid. During the month of Ramadan, Muslims typically complete the recitation of the whole Quran during tarawih prayers, in order to extrapolate the meaning of a particular Quranic verse, most Muslims rely on the tafsir. The word qurʼān appears about 70 times in the Quran itself and it is a verbal noun of the Arabic verb qaraʼa, meaning he read or he recited. The Syriac equivalent is qeryānā, which refers to reading or lesson. While some Western scholars consider the word to be derived from the Syriac, regardless, it had become an Arabic term by Muhammads lifetime.
An important meaning of the word is the act of reciting, as reflected in an early Quranic passage, It is for Us to collect it, in other verses, the word refers to an individual passage recited. Its liturgical context is seen in a number of passages, for example, So when al-qurʼān is recited, listen to it, the word may assume the meaning of a codified scripture when mentioned with other scriptures such as the Torah and Gospel. The term has closely related synonyms that are employed throughout the Quran, each synonym possesses its own distinct meaning, but its use may converge with that of qurʼān in certain contexts. Such terms include kitāb, āyah, and sūrah, the latter two terms denote units of revelation. In the large majority of contexts, usually with an article, the word is referred to as the revelation
A combination of Islam and feminism has been advocated as a feminist discourse and practice articulated within an Islamic paradigm by Margot Badran in 2002. There are substantial differences to be noted between the terms Islamic feminist and Islamist, any of these terms can be used of men or women. Islamic feminism is defined by Islamic scholars as being more radical than secular feminism, during recent times, the concept of Islamic feminism has grown further with Islamic groups looking to garner support from many aspects of society. In addition, educated Muslim women are striving to articulate their role in society, Islamists are advocates of political Islam, the notion that the Quran and hadith mandate a caliphate, i. e. an Islamic government. Some Islamists advocate womens rights in the public sphere but do not challenge gender inequality in the personal, suad al-Fatih al-Badawi, a Sudanese academic and Islamist politician, has argued that feminism is incompatible with taqwa, and thus Islam and feminism are mutually exclusive.
During the early days of Islam in the 7th century CE, reforms in womens rights affected marriage, the Oxford Dictionary of Islam states that the general improvement of the status of women in Arab societies included prohibition of female infanticide and recognizing womens full personhood. Under Islamic law, marriage was no longer viewed as a status but rather as a contract, the dowry, previously regarded as a bride-price paid to the father, became a nuptial gift retained by the wife as part of her personal property. Women were given inheritance rights in a society that had previously restricted inheritance to male relatives. William Montgomery Watt states that Muhammad, in the context of his time, can be seen as a figure who testified on behalf of womens rights. Muhammad, however, by instituting rights of property ownership, inheritance and divorce, whilst the pre-modern period lacked a formal feminist movement, nevertheless a number of important figures argued for improving womens rights and autonomy.
Women played an important role in the foundations of many Islamic educational institutions and this continued through to the Ayyubid dynasty in the 12th and 13th centuries, of 160 mosques and madrasahs established in Damascus, women funded 26 through the Waqf system. Half of all the patrons for these institutions were women. According to the Sunni scholar Ibn Asakir in the 12th century and he wrote that girls and women could study, earn ijazahs, and qualify as scholars and teachers. This was especially the case for learned and scholarly families, who wanted to ensure the highest possible education for both their sons and daughters, Ibn Asakir had himself studied under 80 different female teachers. Female education in the Islamic world was inspired by Muhammads wives, Khadijah, a businesswoman, and Aisha. Muhammad is said to have praised the women of Medina for their desire for knowledge, How splendid were the women of the ansar. While it was not common for women to enroll as students in classes, they did attend informal lectures and study sessions at mosques, madrasahs.
Although there were no restrictions on female education, some men did not approve of this practice
Sufism or Taṣawwuf, which is often defined as Islamic mysticism, the inward dimension of Islam, or the phenomenon of mysticism within Islam, is a mystical trend in Islam characterized. These orders meet for sessions in meeting places known as zawiyas, khanqahs. They strive for ihsan as detailed in a hadith, Ihsan is to worship Allah as if you see Him, if you cant see Him, Rumi stated, The Sufi is hanging on to Muhammad, like Abu Bakr. Sufis regard Muhammad as al-Insān al-Kāmil, the perfect man who exemplifies the morality of God. The orders largely follow one of the four madhhabs of Sunni Islam, classical Sufis were characterized by their asceticism, especially by their attachment to dhikr, the practice of repeating the names of God, often performed after prayers. According to William Chittick, In a broad sense, Sufism can be described as the interiorization, Muslims have used the Arabic word taṣawwuf to identify the practice of Sufis. In this view, it is necessary to be a Muslim to be a true Sufi.
However, Islamic scholars themselves are not by any means in agreement about the meaning of the word sufi, Sufis themselves claim that Tasawwuf is an aspect of Islam similar to Sharia, inseparable from Islam and an integral part of Islamic belief and practice. Classical Sufi scholars have defined Tasawwuf as a science whose objective is the reparation of the heart and turning it away from all else, two origins of the word sufi have been suggested. Commonly, the root of the word is traced to ṣafā. Another origin is ṣūf, wool in Arabic, referring to the simple cloaks the early Muslim ascetics wore, the two were combined by the Sufi al-Rudhabari, who said, The Sufi is the one who wears wool on top of purity. Scholars generally agree that ṣūf or wool is probably the word of Sufi. This term was given to them because they wore woollen garments, the term labisal-suf meant he clad himself in wool and applied to a person who renounced the world and became an ascetic. Others have suggested that the word comes from the term ahl aṣ-ṣuffah and these men and women who sat at al-Masjid an-Nabawi are considered by some to be the first Sufis.
Al-Qushayri and Ibn Khaldun both rejected all other than ṣūf on linguistic grounds. Sufi orders are based on the bayah that was given to the Prophet Muhammad by his Sahaba, by pledging allegiance to the Prophet Muhammad, the Sahaba had committed themselves to the service of God. According to Islamic belief, by pledging allegiance to Prophet Muhammad and it is through the Prophet Muhammad that Sufis aim to learn about and connect with God. Such a concept may be understood by the hadith, which Sufis regard to be authentic, in which Prophet Muhammad said, I am the city of knowledge, eminent Sufis such as Ali Hujwiri refer to Ali as having a very high ranking in Tasawwuf
Islamic art encompasses the visual arts produced from the 7th century onward by people who lived within the territory that was inhabited by or ruled by culturally Islamic populations. The huge field of Islamic architecture is the subject of an article, leaving fields as varied as calligraphy, glass, pottery. Islamic art is not at all restricted to art, but includes all the art of the rich. It frequently includes secular elements and elements that are frowned upon, if not forbidden, figurative painting may cover religious scenes, but normally in essentially secular contexts such as the walls of palaces or illuminated books of poetry. There are repeating elements in Islamic art, such as the use of floral or vegetal designs in a repetition known as the arabesque. The arabesque in Islamic art is used to symbolize the transcendent, indivisible. Mistakes in repetitions may be introduced as a show of humility by artists who believe only God can produce perfection. Human portrayals can be found in all eras of Islamic art, above all in the private form of miniatures.
Human representation for the purpose of worship is considered idolatry and is forbidden in some interpretations of Islamic law. There are depictions of Muhammad, Islams chief prophet. Small decorative figures of animals and humans, especially if they are hunting the animals, are found on pieces in many media from many periods. Other inscriptions include verses of poetry, and inscriptions recording ownership or donation, Islamic calligraphy in the form of painting or sculptures are sometimes referred to as quranic art. Large inscriptions made from tiles, sometimes with the letters raised in relief, complex carved calligraphy decorates buildings. For most of the Islamic period the majority of coins only showed lettering, the tughra or monogram of an Ottoman sultan was used extensively on official documents, with very elaborate decoration for important ones. Other single sheets of calligraphy, designed for albums, might contain short poems, Quranic verses, or other texts. The main languages, all using Arabic script, are Arabic, always used for Quranic verses, Persian in the Persianate world, especially for poetry, calligraphers usually had a higher status than other artists.
The tradition of the Persian miniature has been dominant since about the 13th century, strongly influencing the Ottoman miniature of Turkey, portraits of rulers developed in the 16th century, and in Persia, becoming very popular. Mughal portraits, normally in profile, are very finely drawn in a realist style, while the best Ottoman ones are vigorously stylized, album miniatures typically featured picnic scenes, portraits of individuals or animals, or idealized youthful beauties of either sex