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Chartaq (Persian: چارطاق), chahartaq (چهارطاق), chartaqi (چارطاقی), or chahartaqi (چهارطاقی),[1] literally meaning "having four arches", is an architectural unit consisted of four barrel vaults and a dome.


Chartaqi was a prominent element in Iranian architecture, having various functions and used in both secular and religious contexts for 1,500 years, with the first instance apparently being developed in the Sasanian city of Gor (Firuzabad) in 210s AD by King Ardashir I. The biggest instance of chahartaq is that of the so-called Palace of Shapur I at Bishapur, also in Pars. Many pre-Islamic chahartaqs have survived, but they are usually just the sole surviving structure of a much bigger complex. The chahartaq structure was adopted in Islamic architecture.[2]

A related concept is čahārqāpū (چهارقاپو).[2]

Contemporary architecture

The main plan of the post-modern Azadi Tower in Tehran is said to be influenced by the architecture of chartaqis.[3][4]

See also


  1. ^ Also transliterated with gh instead of q.
  2. ^ a b Dietrich Huff, "ČAHĀRṬĀQ", Encyclopaedia Iranica, December 15, 1990
  3. ^ "بنیادفرهنگی هنری رودکی". Retrieved 20 April 2018.
  4. ^ "Freedom Tower, the gateway to Iranian civilization and art". Retrieved 28 January 2019.