Islamic Architecture Great Mosque of Xian China.
One hundred and twenty kilometers west of Mountain Huashan (among China's five famous mountains) the Great Mosque of Xian (pronounced Sian) is located in the "Huajue Xiang" district, inhabited mainly by the Muslim Hui minority.
The strong Muslim community that lives and works today in Xian traces its history to Arab & Persian merchants, who after traveling the Silk Road, became permanent residents of such cities as Guangzhou, Quanzhou, Hangzhou, Yangzhou, and Chang'an (Today's Xian - was the imperial capital of China for 11 dynasties).
The name Hui is an abbreviation for "Huihui," first appearing in the literature of the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127). Originally referring to the Huihe people (the Ouigurs) who lived in Anxi in the present-day Xinjiang and its vicinity since the Tang Dynasty (618-907). They were actually forerunners of the present-day Uygurs, who are different from today's Huis or Huihuis.
Then, as now, the Muslim community maintained their culture by operating mosques and schools and according to the historical records carved in the stone tablets which are still preserved in it, the Mosque was setup in 742 AD during the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) in the 1st year in the reign of (Emperor Tian Bao) and was repaired in 1384 AD, the 17th year of the reign of emperor (Hong Wu in the Ming Dynasty). The Mosque was the religious center for Arab & Persian merchants operating in China. Today the Muslim community, which supports several mosques, runs its own primary school, foods shops and restaurants - for over 1250 years, they have been an integral part of Xian's vibrant daily life.
The Great Mosque of Xian occupies an area between 12,000 to 13,000 square meters and the buildings cover more than 6,000 square meters, the Great Mosque was built in the shape of a rectangle from the east to the west, and is subdivided into five courtyards and eight pavilions.
The remarkable detailed art and architectural work, characterize this Great Mosque, as one of the most unique Mosque-architecture in the world. In 1956, the Great Mosque was decreed to be an important historical and cultural site under the protection of the Shaanxi Provincial Government, in 1985 it was included in the UNESCO list of heritage sites, and in 1988 it was promoted to be one of the most important sites in China - Xian City is an Architectural treasure-house.
This is the second Islamic Architecture video in a series of videos that will be published on this youtube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/ShiaExcellence - covering Mosques, Palaces, Schools, and Monuments world wide.