Arsalan Jazeb Mausoleum

Tous Governor During the Rule of Ghaznavid Sultan Mahmud

HelloPersia Nov 25, 2018 2 min read

The final resting place of Arsalan Jazeb is now a historical site near Mashhad attracting a rising number of visitors. Arsalan was the governor of Tous in early 11th century during the rule of Sultan Mahmud of the Ghaznavid dynasty. He was also a big devotee of famous Persian poet Ferdowsi. He was the first one who erected a monument over Ferdowsi’s grave.

The mausoleum is some 40 kilometers southeast of Mashhad. The building’s asymmetrical exterior displays no traces of ornamentation. The dome is based on an octagonal structure successively placed on a rectangular base. It’s only a 40-meter-high minaret sits adjacent to the monument. Originally, it was not a self-standing monument, but a part of a bigger complex. The adjacent building was probably to an entrance portal, considering the remains of a wall close to the minaret. The mausoleum, also, should have looked different when it was built. Scholars have suggested that there must have been a gallery, no longer existing, attached to the structure.

Arslan Jazeb Mausoleum
Arslan Jazeb Mausoleum

The interior of the dome flaunts a spiral brickwork and a band of Kufic inscription. Each flank of the octagon transition zone features a pointed arch, uncommon in Iranian architecture.

An entrance on every side of the rectangular base and four skylights confirm that this structure cannot be an Islamic mausoleum, but it was originally a Buddhist temple. Similarities found between the mausoleum and structures in central Asia indicates that the architectural style of late Sassanid and early Islamic eras followed Buddhist architecture.

Arslan Jazeb Mausoleum is in fact the second ancient Islamic structure in Khorasan province after Samanid Mausoleum.

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