Tile of mihrab with hanging lamp and Qur'an inscription (Surah 17:78) - ROM2006_8504_1


Tile of mihrab with hanging lamp and Qur'an inscription (Surah 17:78)

Maker: Inscribed "the work of Abu'l Abbas"
Medium:Ceramic (stonepaste, moulded), with copper-turquoise alkali glaze
Geography: Iran
Date: 13th-14th century AD
27.9 x 20 x 3.5 cm
Object number: 955.129.2
Credit Line: Gift of Miss Helen Norton
On view
Gallery Location:Wirth Gallery of the Middle East
DescriptionAn arched semicircular niche was built into the wall of the Prophet's mosque in Madina to mark the place where he had led prayers. This empty niche became the symbol of his presence and stands in the wall facing Mecca in all mosques although the shape of the niche may vary. Often it contains a hanging lamp recalling the Qur'anic verses of Surah 24:35: "Allah is the light of the Heavens and of the Earth. The likeness of His Light is as it ere a niche wherein is a lamp, the lamp within a glass, the glass as though it were a pearly star. It is lit froma blessed Tree, an olive tree niether of the East nor of the West, the oil from it is as if it could shine even th ough no fire were put to it; Light upon Light; Allah guids to His Light whom He will."
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