Muslim Architecture: Kasba Mosque With Nine-Domes of Gauranadi

This ancient mosque is located in Kasba village (currently gauranadi pourasava’s ward no. 3) of Gouranadi upazila under Barisal district. The Bus stand of the Allah’r Mosque (Kasba Mosque) is towards a 1.5 kilometers north side of the Barisal-Dhaka highway from Gouranadi upazila headquarters. This mosque is located 200 meters west from the Bus stand.

Map: Location of the Kasba Mosque.

No inscription including the construction period and the history of the mosque is found. According to the myth, a Sabahi Khan built the mosque in the 16th century AD (i.e. 1501-1600 AD). No more information was found about the builder of the mosque. It is guessed, however, that the place named Kasba in Gouranadi was a developed Muslim settlement during the Mughal realm.

The length and width of this mosque is measured 11.68 meters and 11.68 meters built in the square-ground plan. The nine-domed mosque has a pillar (column) in the four corners. The round-shaped pillars are built up from the ground upto the roof of the mosque. The walls of the mosque are about 1.95 meters wide. There is no plaster on the outside walls of this mosque built with thin bricks and lime-concrete. The eastern wall of the mosque has 3 entrances and 1 entrance on the north wall and the south wall. Observing the outer walls, it is imagined that there were 3 entrances on the north wall and the south wall of the mosque. Later, leaving 1 entrance in the center of the wall, the remaining entrances of the north wall and the south wall were closed with bricks. Each entrance of the mosque is made up of lancet arch. There are some flowers and diamond decorations on the top panel of the entrance. The mosque has cornice all around the roof. The cornices extend with the partial bend from the middle and connect to the four-cornered pillars.

There are 4 stone pillars inside the mosque. It seems by observing that the pillars are volcanic basalt or dolerite stone. Nine domes on the roof of the mosque are stayed on the lancet arch built on the wide outer walls and the four stone pillars in the interior. There are three mihrabs in the western wall inside the mosque. The middle of the mihrabs is larger than others. Locally, this mosque is known as the mosque of Allah. The architecture of the Masjidkur mosque of the Khulna district and the Nine-domed mosque of the Bagerhat district built during Khan Jahan (r.) are almost similar to the Kasba mosque along with the design, the outer and interior structure, the domes, the entrance position and decoration, the columns of the four-corners etc. of the mosque. It is guessed that Kasba mosque was built at the same time in the 15th century AD after the Muslim occupation of southern areas of Bangladesh by Khan Jahan (r.) because of the close confluence of the Kasba mosque with the architectural style built during Khan Jahan period. This Muslim architecture is listed and supervised by the Department of Archaeology as a protected archaeological heritage of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.

Click for Bengali Version

[Author: Md. Shahin Alam]

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