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Early Islamic World


History for Kids >> Early Islamic World

The architectural style of the Islamic Empire spread throughout the Middle East, Northern Africa, Spain, and parts of Asia during the Middle Ages. Many of the elements were inspired by the Islamic religion.

Kocatepe Mosque in Ankara, Turkey
A Mosque with Minarets and Domes
Source: Wikimedia Commons. User: Noumenon
Major Elements
Bara Gumbad Mosque Arch
An Ogee Arch with
Calligraphy Decorations

by Daderot. 2010
Alcazaba, Alhambra, Granada, Spain
Alhambra Palace in Spain
by Jebulon. 2014.
Gardens and Courtyards

Courtyards and gardens were an important part of early Islamic architecture. Many buildings had a courtyard or garden where people could relax. Fountains were common in these areas to help cool people down from the dry desert heat.


Most of the decorations in Islamic architecture involved intricate patterns. These patterns were often carved into the ceilings, walls, and doors of important buildings. Images of animals and people were avoided for religious reasons.
Detail Arabesque Alhambra Granada Spain
Arabesque Example by Jebulon. 2012.
Interesting Facts about Architecture in the Early Islamic World Activities More on the Early Islamic World:

Timeline and Events
Timeline of the Islamic Empire
First Four Caliphs
Umayyad Caliphate
Abbasid Caliphate
Ottoman Empire

Scholars and Scientists
Ibn Battuta
Suleiman the Magnificent
Daily Life
Trade and Commerce
Science and Technology
Calendar and Festivals

Islamic Spain
Islam in North Africa
Important Cities
Glossary and Terms

Works Cited

History for Kids >> Early Islamic World

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