(Persia Digest) – Soltanieh Dome, in Soltanieh – Zanjan Province in northwestern Iran – is the largest raw brick dome in the world. It was constructed in the years 1303 to 1312 on the orders of Soltan Mohammad Khodabandeh, the eight Ilkhani king.
The Soltanieh Dome has a magnificent, complicated architecture unique to itself. After the Santa Maria Cathedral in Rome and the Ayasofia Mosque in Turkey, this is the third largest dome in the world. It is also the widest one.
The building has been constructed as an octagonal and the main material used here is raw bricks. The outer shell of the dome has been covered with turquoise tiles. This is the mausoleum of Soltan Mohammad Khodabandeh. It was also used as a sun dial in religious ceremonies.
The structure has eight doors, eight ivans, and eight minarets. Its three important parts include a chahartaq, a crypt, and a cellar. The crypt has been built in the southern part of the complex facing the qiblah. It is 18 meters tall. The cellar is underneath the crypt and it is said that this was built before the dome itself.
This magnificent structure is 35kms from Zanjan, on the Tehran-Tabriz road.
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