Essential Architecture-  Iraq

Mustansiriya University, Baghdad

style

Islamic Persian

construction

brick

type

University
 
 
 
 
   
Al-Mustansiriya University (Arabic,الجامعة المستنصرية) is one of the universities providing higher education in Baghdad, Iraq. It was restructured in 1927 (formerly named as Mustansiriya Madrasah) and is one of the oldest universities (Madrasah) in the world. It was established in 1227 by the Abbasid Caliph al-Mustansir. Its building, located on the left bank of the Tigris River, survived the Mongol invasion of 1258 and has been restored. Nearby buildings included the Saray souq, the Baghdadi Museum, Mutanabbi Street, the Abbasid Palace and Caliph's Street. Now the university is relocated in new campus after restructuring.
 
The Madrasa Al Mustansiriyah in Baghdad is considered one of the ancient Arab Islamic universities known for teaching Koran sciences, the Sunna of the Prophet, jurisprudence doctrines, Arabic linguistics, mathematics, religious duties and medicine. This school was most characterized of all its previous and contemporary schools by its special annex. In front of the madrasa's gate there was a clock used in knowing times of prayers and lectures. It was made and maintained by Nureddine Ali Bnu Taghlub Al Sa'ati (the clock maker).

This school was built by the Abbasid caliph al-Mustansir Billah in Baghdad on the side of Rusafa overlooking the Tigris between 625AH /1227AD and Jumada II in 631AH /1234AD. The Madrasa al-Mustansiriya is a rectangular building comprising a courtyard surrounded by porches, and in the middle of each side there is a 6-metres-wide halls, each surrounded by two classrooms. Students dormitories consisted of two floors and were at the end of halls. The architect enclosed all parts of the madrasa, such as rooms, halls, sitting rooms and porches, by a single frame encompassing all of them, and set a spacious and long courtyard in the middle.

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Lecture halls were built in the southern side whose ceilings are two floors as high as the opposite building that consists of rooms above which are arcades as high as the lecture halls. The two buildings are separated by a two-floor high corridor, connected with the external courtyard through two lateral apertures counter to the prevailing wind. Thus, the air bursts in under the pressure of external wind to fill the corridor's vacuum. Thanks to this processing, it seems the building is designed to receive the air in a horizontal way, which reveals the extent to which the Muslim architect grasped the principles of aerodynamics well before modern science got to its details.

links

http://www.isesco.org.ma/english/irak/MuslimArab.php
www.essential-architecture.com