Sunday, May 06, 2012

Sha Hamdan Mosque

Even though we had already been to a number of mosques, my gracious hosts were eager to bring me to one more - the Chanukah Mosque of Shah Hamdan. Although one of the oldest mosques in Srinagar (originally built 1395, rebuilt 1732), it was easily the most beautiful I had seen here. The beautifully patterned wood sections glowed in the golden late afternoon light. The ornamental Pinjrakari (latticework) on the closed window shutters reminded me of jalis found in Rajasthan. Although each let in light and provided ventilation and privacy, these were created in wood, instead of stone. On a few walls and ceilings were covered with papier mâché designs - so beautiful and yet delicate. Even the graceful wooden pyramidal steeple included ornamentation - a feast for the photographer’s eye wherever the lens was pointed!

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