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Iranian architecture

Architecture associated with Iran / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Iranian architecture or Persian architecture (Persian: معمارى ایرانی, Me'māri e Irāni) is the architecture of Iran and parts of the rest of West Asia, the Caucasus and Central Asia. Its history dates back to at least 5,000 BC with characteristic examples distributed over a vast area from Turkey and Iraq to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, and from the Caucasus to Zanzibar. Persian buildings vary greatly in scale and function, from vernacular architecture to monumental complexes.[2] In addition to historic gates, palaces, and mosques, the rapid growth of cities such as the capital Tehran has brought about a wave of demolition and new construction.

Azadi Tower in Tehran (1971), by architect Hossein Amanat. His ideas were based upon classical and post-classical Iranian architecture.[1]
The ruins of Persepolis, begun in the 6th century BC during the Achaemenid Empire
Example of an iwan and muqarnas decoration at the entrance of the Shah Mosque in Isfahan (17th century)

According to American historian and archaeologist Arthur Pope, the supreme Iranian art, in the proper meaning of the word, has always been its architecture. The supremacy of architecture applies to both pre- and post-Islamic periods.[3] Iranian architecture displays great variety, both structural and aesthetic, from a variety of traditions and experience. Without sudden innovations, and despite the repeated trauma of invasions and cultural shocks, it developed a recognizable style distinct from other regions of the Muslim world.[4] Its virtues are "a marked feeling for form and scale; structural inventiveness, especially in vault and dome construction; a genius for decoration with a freedom and success not rivaled in any other architecture".[5]

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