Palace Mosque - Shirvanshah
Palace Mosque of Shirvan Dynasty
Shirvan Dynasty Mosque was located at the bottom level of the palace premises. It was built in 1441 for religious ceremonies. The area of the mosque is small. It is explained by the fact that only a selected circle of people visited it. Probably they were the Shah's family members and their confidants.
The Mosque has three entrances. The northern main entrance (for the Shah and his relatives) - is marked by a portal boarded by a wide frame cut in a stone. Both sides of the portal have niches for footwear (according to the customs of the Muslim world it is prohibited to enter a mosque wearing footwear and without ceremonial of ablution). The east entrance to the Mosque is marked by a more modest portal (for visitors); the one from the West has no distinctive features.
There were two halls for praying in the Mosque - for men (the bigger one) and for women (a smaller one). The mikhrab is located in the southern wall. There are also niches of various forms in the walls: they were used for keeping carpets, Korans, beads. The windows are covered by stone lattices-shebeke adding special beauty to this modest building.
The 22-meter tall minaret is in the northeast corner of the building. Under the stalactite belt of the minaret there is the inscription: "... the greatest sultan Halilullah I has ordered to erect this minaret. May the Allah will glorify the days of his rule and reign …".
The thin tall minaret, together with the bigger and smaller domes, makes the picturesque silhouette of the Shah Mosque.