Mamluk architecture was a flowering of Islamic art during the reign of the Mamluk Sultanate, most visible in medieval Cairo. Religious zeal made them generous patrons of art. Trade and agriculture flourished under Mamluk rule, Cairo, their capital, became one of the wealthiest cities in the Near East and the center of artistic and intellectual activity; this made Cairo, in the words of Ibn Khaldun, "the center of the universe and the garden of the world", with majestic domes and soaring minarets spread across the city. The architectural identity of Mamluk religious monuments stems from the major purpose that individuals erected their own memorials, therefore adding a high degree of individuality; each building reflected the patron's individual tastes and name. Mamluk architecture is oftentimes categorized more by the reigns of the major sultan, than a specific design; the Mamluk elite were more knowledgeable in the art of buildings than many historians. Since the Mamluks had both wealth and power, the overall moderate proportions of Mamluk architecture—compared to Timurid or classical Ottoman styles—is due to the individual decisions of patrons who preferred to sponsor multiple projects.
The sponsors of the mosques of Baibars, an-Nasir Muhammad, an-Nasir Faraj, al-Mu'ayyad, Qaitbay and al-Ashraf Qansuh al-Ghawri all preferred to build several mosques in the capital rather than focusing on one colossal monument. Mamluk sultans and emirs were known for their zealous patronage of art and architecture throughout the Mamluk period, their projects could include a single mausoleum or a small charitable building, while their larger architectural complexes combined many functions into one or more buildings. These could include charitable functions and social services, such as a mosque, madrasa, maktab, sabil, or hod; these buildings and their institutions were protected by waqf agreements, which gave them the status of charitable endowments or trusts which were inalienable under Islamic law. This allowed the sultan's legacy to be assured through his architectural projects, his tomb – and the tombs of his family – was placed in a mausoleum attached to his religious complex. Since charity is one of the fundamental pillars of Islam, these charitable projects publicly demonstrated the sultan's piousness, while madrasas in particular linked the ruling Mamluk elite with the ulama, the religious scholars who inevitably acted as intermediaries with the wider population.
Such projects helped confer legitimacy to the Mamluk sultans, who lived apart from the general population and were non-Arab, not to mention of slave origin. Their charitable constructions strengthened their symbolic role as pious protectors of orthodox Sunni Islam and as sponsors of ṭuruq and of the local shrines of saints. Additionally, the provisions of the pious endowments served the role of providing a financial future for the sultan's family after his death, as the Mamluk Sultanate was non-hereditary and the sultan's sons only succeeded in taking the throne after his death, for long; the sultan's family and descendants could benefit by retaining control of the various waqf establishments he built, by retaining a part of the revenues from those establishments as tax-free income, all of which could not, in theory, be annulled by the regimes of subsequent sultans. As such, the building zeal of the Mamluk rulers was motivated by real pragmatic benefits, as recognized by some contemporary observers like Ibn Khaldun.
While the organization of Mamluk monuments varied, the funerary dome and minaret were constant leitmotifs. These attributes are prominent features in a Mamluk mosque's profile and were significant in the beautification of the city skyline. In Cairo, the funerary dome and minaret were respected as symbols of worship. Patrons used these visual attributes to express their individuality by decorating each dome and minaret with distinct patterns. Patterns carved on domes ranged from zigzags to floral and geometric star designs; the funerary dome of Aytimish al-Bajasi and the mausoleum dome of Qaitbay's sons reflect the diversity and detail of Mamluk architecture. The creativity of Mamluk builders was emphasized with these leitmotifs. Expanding on the Fatimid Caliphate's development of street-adjusted mosque façades, the Mamluks developed their architecture to enhance street vistas. In addition, new aesthetic concepts and architectural solutions were created to reflect their assumed role in history.
By 1285 the essential features of Mamluk architecture were established in the complex of Sultan Qalawan. However, it took three decades for the Mamluks to create a distinct architecture; the Mamluk utilized chiaroscuro and dappled light effects in their buildings. By 1517, the Ottoman conquest brought Mamluk architecture to an end. Mamluk history is divided into two periods based on different dynastic lines: the Bahri Mamluks of Kipchak origin from southern Russia, named after the location of their barracks on the Nile, the Burji Mamluks of Circassian origin, who were quartered in the citadel; the Bahri reign defined the architecture of the entire Mamluk period. Mamluk decorative arts—especially enameled and gilded glass, inlaid metalwork and textiles—were
Nabatean architecture refers to the building traditions of the Nabateans in Jordan. It includes the temple and tombs of Petra in the sandstone cliffs of Jordan’s Negev desert; the style appears a mix of Hellenistic influences. Much of the surviving architecture was excavated out of rock cliffs. So the columns do not support anything. Ceramics and coins were part of the culture. In addition to the most famous sites in Petra, there are Nabatean complexes at Obodas and residential complexes at Mampsis and a religious site of et-Tannur. Nabataean art
Islamic architecture is the range of architectural styles of buildings associated with Islam. It encompasses religious styles from the early history of Islam to the present day. Early Islamic architecture was influenced by Roman, Persian and all other lands which the Muslims conquered in the 7th and 8th centuries. Further east, it was influenced by Chinese and Indian architecture as Islam spread to Southeast Asia, it developed distinct characteristics in the form of buildings, the decoration of surfaces with Islamic calligraphy and geometric and interlace patterned ornament. The principal Islamic architectural types for large or public buildings are: the Mosque, the Tomb, the Palace and the Fort. From these four types, the vocabulary of Islamic architecture is derived and used for other buildings such as public baths and domestic architecture. Many of the buildings which are mentioned in this article are listed as World Heritage Sites; some of them, like the Citadel of Aleppo, have suffered significant damage in the ongoing Syrian Civil War.
The most recent building that can be known as a true example modern of Islamic architecture is Imam Sadiq University, this building was the winner of Aga Khan fundation as well. This building designed by Nader Ardalan, Iranian architect teaching at Harvard University; the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem is one of the most important buildings in all of Islamic architecture. It is patterned after the nearby Church of the Holy Sepulchre and Byzantine Christian artists were employed to create its elaborate mosaics against a golden background; the great epigraphic vine frieze was adapted from the pre-Islamic Syrian style. The Dome of the Rock featured interior vaulted spaces, a circular dome, the use of stylized repeating decorative arabesque patterns. Desert palaces in Jordan and Syria served the caliphs as living quarters, reception halls, baths, were decorated to promote an image of royal luxury; the horseshoe arch became a popular feature in Islamic structures. Some suggest the Muslims acquired this from the Visigoths in Spain but they may have obtained it from Syria and Persia where the horseshoe arch had been in use by the Byzantines.
In Moorish architecture, the curvature of the horseshoe arch is much more accentuated. Furthermore, alternating colours were added to accentuate the effect of its shape; this can be seen at a large scale in the Great Mosque of Córdoba. The Great Mosque of Damascus, built on the site of the basilica of John the Baptist after the Islamic invasion of Damascus, still bore great resemblance to 6th and 7th century Christian basilicas. Certain modifications were implemented, including expanding the structure along the transversal axis which better fit with the Islamic style of prayer; the Abbasid dynasty witnessed the movement of the capital from Damascus to Baghdad, from Baghdad to Samarra. The shift to Baghdad influenced politics and art; the Great Mosque of Samarra, once the largest in the world, was built for the new capital. Other major mosques built in the Abbasid Dynasty include the Mosque of Ibn Tulun in Cairo, Abu Dalaf in Iraq, the great mosque in Tunis. Abbasid architecture in Iraq as exemplified in the Fortress of Al-Ukhaidir demonstrated the "despotic and the pleasure-loving character of the dynasty" in its grand size but cramped living quarters.
The Great Mosque of Kairouan is considered the ancestor of all the mosques in the western Islamic world. Its original marble columns and sculptures were of Roman workmanship brought in from Carthage and other elements resemble Roman form, it is one of the best preserved and most significant examples of early great mosques, founded in 670 AD and dating in its present form from the Aghlabid period. The Great Mosque of Kairouan is constituted of a massive square minaret, a large courtyard surrounded by porticos and a huge hypostyle prayer hall covered on its axis by two cupolas; the Great Mosque of Samarra in Iraq, completed in 847 AD, combined the hypostyle architecture of rows of columns supporting a flat base above which a huge spiraling minaret was constructed. The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul influenced Islamic architecture; when the Ottomans captured the city from the Byzantines, they converted the basilica to a mosque and incorporated Byzantine architectural elements into their own work. The Hagia Sophia served as a model for many Ottoman mosques such as the Shehzade Mosque, the Suleiman Mosque, the Rüstem Pasha Mosque.
Domes are a major structural feature of Islamic architecture. The dome first appeared in Islamic architecture in 691 with the construction of the Dome of the Rock, a near replica of the existing Church of the Holy Sepulchre and other Christian domed basilicas situated nearby. Domes remain in use, being a significant feature of many mosques and of the Taj Mahal in the 17th century; the distinctive pointed domes of Islamic architecture originating with the Byzantines and Persians, have remained a distinguishing feature of mosques into the 21st century. Distinguishing motifs of Islamic architecture have always been the mathematical themes of ordered repetition, radiating structures, rhythmic, metric patterns. In this respect, fractal geometry has been a key utility for mosques and palaces. Other significant features employed as motifs include columns and arches, organized and interwoven with alternating sequences of niches and colonnettes. From the eighth to the eleventh century, Islamic architectural styles were influenced by two different ancien
Abbasid architecture developed in the Abbasid Caliphate between 750 and 945 in its heartland of Mesopotamia. The Abbasids inherited Persian architectural traditions in Mesopotamia, were influenced by Central Asian styles, they evolved distinctive styles of their own in decoration of their buildings. While the Abbasids lost control of large parts of their empire after 850, their architecture continued to be copied by successor states in Iran and North Africa. In 750 the Abbasids seized power from the Umayyad rulers of the Arab empire, who lost all their possessions apart from Spain; the Abbasid caliphs based in what is now Iraq ruled over Iran, Mesopotamia and the lands of the eastern and southern Mediterranean. The period between 750 and 900 has been described as the Islamic Golden Age. Where the Umayyads had reused pre-Islamic buildings in the cities they had conquered, by the Abbasid era many of these structures required replacement; the spread of Muslim beliefs had brought changes in needs.
The Abbasids had to erect mosques and palaces, as well as fortifications, commercial buildings and facilities for racing and polo matches. They upgraded the pilgrim road from Baghdad and Kufa to Mecca, levelled the surface and built walls and ditches in some areas, built stations for the pilgrims with rooms and a mosque in which to pray. In 762 the caliph al-Mansur founded a new capital of Baghdad on the Tigris, which soon grew to one of the largest cities in the world. In 836 the caliph al-Mu'tasim transferred the capital to Samarra; the Abbasids began to lose control over the outlying parts of the empire, with local dynasties gaining effective independence in Khorasan in eastern Iran and Ifriqiya. The caliph al-Mu'tamid, by now the effective ruler only of Iraq, moved his capital back to Baghdad in 889. In 945 the Buyids, followers of Shia Islam, became effective rulers as amirs, while the Abbasid caliphs retained their nominal title. With Caliph al-Nasir the Abbasids once again gained control of Iraq, but the sack of Baghdad by the Mongols in 1258 brought the Abbasid caliphate to an end.
Early Abbasid architecture was similar to the architecture of the Sassanid Empire, as exemplified by the Palace of Ukhaidhir. It used the same techniques, the same materials of mud brick, baked brick and rough stone blocks set in mortar, followed Sassanian designs. Stone is rare in the central and southern alluvial plains that formed the heartland of Abbasid territory, so many of the buildings were of mud-brick, faced with plaster and repaired or rebuilt. Sometimes fired brick was used; when the caliph al-Mansur built the round city of Baghdad, called Madinat al-Salam, which contained the caliphal palace and administrative buildings, he may have been following earlier traditions such as the round city of Gur built by Ardashir I at Firuzabad. With the conquest of Central Asia, the influence of Soghdian architecture increased. In Samarra the stucco and wall paintings are similar to that of the palaces of Panjakent in what is now Tajikistan. In the 12th and 13th centuries, architecture in the lands ruled by the Abbasids became dominated by Seljuk architecture.
Abbasid cities were laid out on huge sites. The palaces and mosques of Samarra sprawled along the shores of the Tigris for 40 kilometres. To match the scale of the sites, monumental buildings were erected, such as the huge spiral minarets of the Abu Dulaf Mosque and the Great Mosque of Samarra, which had no counterparts elsewhere; the two-centered pointed arch and vault had appeared before the Abbasids took power, but became standard in Abbasid architecture, with the point becoming more prominent. The first developed example of the four-centered pointed arch was at the Qasr al-'Ashiq, built between 878 and 882. Three new types of stucco decoration were developed in Samarra and became popular elsewhere; the first two styles may be seen as derivative from Late Antique or Umayyad decorative styles, but the third is new. Style C used molds to create repeating patterns of curved lines, notches and other elements; the fluid designs make no use of geometric or animal themes. The stucco work was sometimes colored in red or blue, sometimes incorporated a glass mosaic.
The patterns cut into the stucco surface at an angle. This is the purest example of the arabesque, it may represent a deliberate attempt to make an abstract form of decoration that avoids depiction of living things, this may explain its rapid adoption throughout the Muslim world. Typical features of the more important buildings included massive round piers and smaller engaged columns. 9th century Abbasid architecture had foliate decorations on arches, pendant vaults, muqarnas vaults and polychrome interlaced spandrels that became identified as typical of "Islamic" architecture, although these forms may have their origins in Sassanian architecture. Thus the fronting arch of the Arch of Ctesiphon was once decorated with a lobed molding, a form copied in the palace of al-Ukhaidar; the earliest surviving Abbasid palace, built around 775, is the al-Ukhaidir Fortress. It has a plan derived from earlier Umayyad palaces; the palace lies in the desert about 180 kilometres to the south of Baghdad. It is rectangular in 175 by 169 metres, with four gates.
Three are in half-round towers that protrude from the wall, one in a rectangular recess in the wall. Inside there is a vaulted entrance hall, a central court, an iwan open to the court opposite the entrance hall, residential units. Sasanian techniques persist in the construction of vaults with pointed curves using rubble and mortar faced with b
An iwan is a rectangular hall or space vaulted, walled on three sides, with one end open. The formal gateway to the iwan is called pishtaq, a Persian term for a portal projecting from the facade of a building decorated with calligraphy bands, glazed tilework, geometric designs. Since the definition allows for some interpretation, the overall forms and characteristics can vary in terms of scale, material, or decoration. Iwans are most associated with Islamic architecture; the root of this term is Old Persian'Apadana' where king Darius I declares in an inscription, "I, Darius... had this'Apadana' constructed...". Apadana is a name given to this particular palace in modern literature, although the name implies a type of structure, the iwan, not a particular palace; the term in Old Persian means "unprotected", the design allows the structure to be open to the elements on one side. At Persepolis, the'apadana' takes the form of a veranda, that is, a flat roof held up by columns, rather than a vault — but still open to the elements on only one side.
A comparable structure is found 2000 years in Isfahan at the Palace of Chehel Sotoun. By the time of the Parthian and the Sasanian dynasties, the iwan had emerged as two types of structure: the old columned one, a newer vaulted structure—both, carrying the same native name of apadana/iwan, because both types are "unprotected". Iwans were a trademark of the Parthian Empire and the Sassanid architecture of Persia finding their way throughout the Arab and Islamic architecture which started developing in 7th century AD, after the period of Muhammad; this development reached its peak during the Seljuki era, when iwans became a fundamental unit in architecture, the Mughal architecture. The form is not confined to any particular function, is found in buildings for either secular or religious uses, in both public and residential architecture. Ivan is an alternative form of the name, reflecting the Persian pronunciation. Many scholars - including Edward Keall, André Godard, Roman Ghirshman, Mary Boyce - discuss the invention of the iwan in Mesopotamia, the area around today's Iraq.
Although debate remains among scholars as to how the iwan developed, there is a general consensus that the iwan evolved locally, was thus not imported from another area. Similar structures, known as "pesgams", were found in many Zoroastrian homes in Yazd, where two or four halls would open onto a central court; the feature which most distinctly makes the iwan a landmark development in the history of Ancient Near Eastern architecture is the incorporation of a vaulted ceiling. A vault is defined as a ceiling made from arches, known as arcuated constructed with stone, concrete, or bricks. Earlier buildings would be covered in a trabeated manner, with post and lintel beams. However, vaulted ceilings did exist in the ancient world before the invention of the iwan, both within Mesopotamia and outside it. Mesopotamian examples include Susa, where the Elamites vaulted many of their buildings with barrel vaults, Nineveh, where the Assyrians vaulted their passages for fortification purposes. Outside Mesopotamia, a number of extant vaulted structures stand, including many examples from Ancient Egypt and the Mycenaeans.
For example, the Mycenaean Treasury of Atreus, constructed around 1250 BCE, features a large corbelled dome. Egyptian architecture began to use vaulting in its structures after the Third Dynasty, after around 2600 BCE, constructing early barrel vaults using mud bricks. Although some scholars have asserted that the iwan form may have developed under the Seleucids, today most scholars agree that the Parthians were the inventors of the iwan. One of the earliest Parthian iwans was found at Seleucia, located on the Tigris River, where the shift from post-and-lintel construction to vaulting occurred around the 1st century CE. Other early iwans have been suggested at Ashur, where two buildings containing iwan-like foundations were found; the first building, located near the ruins of a ziggurat, featured a three-iwan façade. The proximity of the building to a ziggurat suggests that it may have been used for religious preparations or rituals, it could indicate a palatial building, as it was common for the ziggurat and palace to be situated next to one another in the Ancient Near East.
What seems to be a palace courtyard had iwans on each side, which remained a common features well into Islamic times. The second iwan building is located across a courtyard, Walter Andrae, a German archaeologist, suggested that it served as an administrative building rather than as a religious center because there is no evidence of inscriptions or wall carvings. Although the absence of inscriptions or carvings does not equate to a civic function, it was not uncommon for iwans to serve a secular use, as they were incorporated into palaces and community spaces. Other early sites including Parthian iwans include Hatra, the Parthian ruins at Dura Europos, Uruk; the Sasanian Persians favored the iwan form, adopted it into much of their architecture. The Parthian iwan led to other spaces. In contrast, the Sasanian iwan served as a grand entran
Madrasa is the Arabic word for any type of educational institution, secular or religious, whether for elementary instruction or higher learning. The word is variously transliterated madrasah, madrassa, medrese, etc. In the West, the word 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; the word madrasah derives from the triconsonantal Semitic root د-ر-س D-R-S'to learn, study', through the wazn مفعل. Therefore, madrasah means "a place where learning and studying take place"; the word is present as a loanword with the same innocuous meaning in many Arabic-influenced languages, such as: Urdu, Pashto, Persian, Azeri, Indonesian and Bosnian. In the Arabic language, the word مدرسة madrasah means the same as school does in the English language, whether, private, public or parochial school, as well as for any primary or secondary school whether Muslim, non-Muslim, or secular. Unlike the use of the word school in British English, the word madrasah more resembles the term school in American English, in that it can refer to a university-level or post-graduate school as well as to a primary or secondary school.
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. However, in English, the term madrasah refers to the Islamic institutions. A typical Islamic school offers two courses of study: a ḥifẓ course teaching memorization of the Qur'an. A regular curriculum includes courses in Arabic, sharīʻah, hadiths and Muslim history. In the Ottoman Empire, during the Early Modern Period, the study of hadiths was introduced by Süleyman I. Depending on the educational demands, some madaris offer additional advanced courses in Arabic literature and other foreign languages, as well as science and world history. Ottoman madaris along with religious teachings taught "styles of writing, syntax, composition, natural sciences, political sciences, etiquette."People of all ages attend, many move on to becoming imams.
The certificate of an ʻālim, for example, requires 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 and reside in dormitories. 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; the term "Islamic education" means education in the light of Islam itself, rooted in the teachings of the Qur'an - the holy book of the Muslims. Islamic education and Muslim education are not the same; because Islamic education has epistemological integration, founded on Tawhid - Oneness or monotheism. The first institute of madrasa education was at the estate of Zaid bin Arkam near a hill called Safa, where Muhammad was the teacher and the students were some of his followers. 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 Muhammad among the students.
In the curriculum of the madrasa, there were teachings of The Qur'an, The Hadith, fara'iz, genealogy, treatises of first aid, etc. 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 Umayyad Caliphate. Established in 859, Jāmiʻat al-Qarawīyīn in the city of Fas, Morocco, is considered the oldest university in the world by some scholars, though the existence of universities in the medieval Muslim world is debated, 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, Egypt. During the late ʻAbbāsid period, the Seljuk vizier Niẓām al-Mulk created one of the first major official academic institutions known in history as the Madrasah Niẓāmīyah, based on the informal majālis. 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.
During the rule of the Fatimid and Mamluk dynasties and their successor states in the medieval Middle East, many of the ruling elite founded madaris through a religious endowment known as the waqf. Not only was the madrasa a potent symbol of status but it was an effective means of transmitting wealth and status to their descendants. During the Mamluk period, when only former slaves could assume power, the sons of the ruling Mamlūk elite were unable to inherit. Guaranteed positions within the new madaris thus allowed them to maintain status. Madaris
An Islamic garden is an expressive estate of land that includes themes of water and shade. Traditionally used to provide respite from a hot and arid environment, Islamic gardens served several other purposes. Furthermore, the region of Islam expands into a variety of other climates, in addition to the more common hot and arid areas. Unlike English gardens, which are designed for walking, Islamic gardens are intended for rest and contemplation; the most identifiable architectural designs of Islamic gardens reflect the Chahār Bāgh design. However, the Chahār Bāgh was not the most common, as many gardens encompassed a wide variety of forms and purposes which no longer exist. A major focus of the Islamic gardens was to provide a sensory experience, accomplished through the use of water and sensory plants leading to the effect of dematerialization; the Qur'an has many references to gardens and states that gardens are used as an earthly analogue for the life in paradise, promised to believers: Allah has promised to the believing men and the believing women gardens, beneath which rivers flow, to abide in them, goodly dwellings in gardens of perpetual abode.
These other associations provide more symbolism in the manner of serene thoughts and reflection and are associated with a scholarly sense. While many Islamic gardens no longer exist, there are still many surviving formal Islamic gardens in a wide zone extending from Spain and Morocco in the west to India in the east. After the Arab invasions of the 7th century CE, the traditional design of the Persian garden was used in many Islamic gardens. Persian gardens were designed to represent paradise as they were traditionally enclosed by walls and the Persian word for an enclosed space is'pairi-daeza.' Hellenistic influences are apparent in their designs, as seen in the Western use of straight lines in a few garden plans that are blended with Sassanid ornamental plantations and fountains. One of the most identifiable garden designs, known as the Charbagh, consists of four quadrants most divided by either water channels or walkways that took on many forms of variation. One of these variations included sunken quadrants with planted trees filling them, so that they would be level to the viewer.
Another variation is a courtyard at the center intersection, with pools built either in the courtyard or surrounding the courtyard. While the chahār bāgh gardens are the most identified gardens few were built due to their high costs or because they belonged to the higher class, who had the capabilities to insure their survival. Notable examples of the chahār bāgh include Balkuwara Madinat al-Zahra in Spain. An interpretation of the chahār bāgh's design is conveyed as a metaphor for a “whirling wheel of time” that challenges time and change; this idea of cyclical time places man at the center of this wheel or space and reinforces perpetual renewal and the idea that the garden represents the antithesis of deterioration. The enclosed garden forms a space, permanent, a space where time does not decay the elements within the walls, representing an unworldly domain. At the center of the cycle of time is the human being who, after being released reaches eternity. Aside from gardens found in palaces, they found their way in other locations as well.
The Great Mosque of Córdoba contains a continuously planted garden in which rows of fruit trees, similar to an orchard, were planted in the courtyard. This garden was irrigated by a nearby aqueduct and served as the purpose to provide shade and fruit for the mosque's caretaker. Another type of garden design includes stepped terraces, in which water flows through a central axis, creating a trickling sound and animation effect with each step, which could be used to power water jets. An example of the stepped terraces gardens includes the Shālamār Bāgh, the Bāgh-i Bābur, Madinat al-Zahra. Islamic gardens presented a variety of devices that all contributed to the stimulation of several senses and the mind, with the purpose to enhance one's experience in the garden; these devices include the manipulation of water and the usage of aromatic plants, which affected one's sense of sight, sound and touch. With the use of irrigated channels of water from select locations, the creators of the gardens were able to provide fertile soil which enabled the gardens to exist in their drier climates.
Water itself served many sensory functions, such as a desire for interaction, illusionary reflections, animation of still objects therefore stimulating visual and somatosensory senses. Due to the hot and arid conditions where gardens were built, water was used as a way to refresh and cool an exhausted visitor. Therefore, many people would come to the gardens to interact with the water. Structures, such as buildings and mausoleums, were strategically placed so that their reflections could be cast in the water, drawing further attention to the architecture; the interaction of reflections with the rippling water caused by jets and the shimmering sunlight aided in the illusionary effect upon the viewer and added more emphasis on the subject. Another use of water was to provide kinetic sound to an inert object. Many Nasrid palaces included a sculpture in their garden in which a jet of water would flow out of the structure's mouth. By doing this, motion and a "roaring sound" of water is added to the sensory