The Jameh Mosque in Isfahan, Iran, a historical congregational mosque originally founded in the eighth century

A congregational mosque or Friday mosque (Arabic: مَسْجِد جَامِع, masjid jāmi‘, or simply: جَامِع, jāmi‘; Turkish: Cami), or sometimes great mosque or grand mosque (Arabic: جامع كبير, jāmi‘ kabir; Turkish: Ulu Cami), is a mosque for hosting the Friday noon prayers known as jumu'ah.[1] It can also host the Eid prayers in situations when there is no musalla or eidgah available nearby to host the prayers. In early Islamic history, the number of congregational mosques in one city was strictly limited. As cities and populations grew over time, it became more common for many mosques to host Friday prayers in the same area.[2][3]

Etymology

The full Arabic term for this kind of mosque is masjid jāmi‘ (مَسْجِد جَامِع), which is typically translated as "mosque of congregation" or "congregational mosque".[2] "Congregational" is used to translate jāmi‘ (جَامِع), which comes from the Arabic root "ج - م - ع" which has a meaning ‘to bring together’ or ‘to unify’ (verbal form: جمع and يجمع).[4][2] In Arabic, the term is typically simplified to just jāmi‘ (جَامِع). Similarly, in Turkish the term cami (Turkish pronunciation: [d͡ʒami]) is used for the same purpose.[5] As the distinction between a "congregational mosque" and other mosques has diminished in more recent history, the Arabic terms masjid and jami' have become more interchangeable.[6][7]

In non-Arab Muslim nations, the word jāmi‘ ("that which gathers, congregates or assembles") is often conflated with another word from the same root, jumu‘ah (Arabic: جُمُعَة, lit.'assembly, gathering'), a term which refers to the Friday noon prayers (Arabic: صَلَاة الْجُمُعَة, romanizedṣalāṫ al-jumu‘ah, lit.'prayer of assembly') or the Friday itself (Arabic: يَوْم الْجُمُعَة, romanizedyawm al-jumu‘ah, lit.'day of assembly').[8]

History

Mosque of Amr ibn al-As, founded in the seventh century as the first congregational mosque of Fustat, Egypt

Since the early periods of Islam, a functional distinction existed between large central mosques built and controlled by the state versus small local mosques built and maintained by the general population.[9] In the early years of Islam, under the Rashidun caliphs and many of the Umayyad caliphs, each city generally had only one congregational mosque where Friday prayers were held, while smaller mosques for regular prayers were built in local neighbourhoods. In fact, in some parts of the Islamic world such as in Egypt, Friday services were initially not permitted in villages and in other areas outside the main city where the congregational mosque stood.[10] The ruler or governor of the city usually built his residence (the dar al-imara) next to the congregational mosque, and in this early period the ruler also delivered the khutbah (Friday sermon) during Friday prayers.[9][11] This practice was inherited from the example of Muhammad and was passed on the caliphs after him. In the provinces, the local governors who ruled on behalf of the caliph were expected to deliver the khutbah for their local community.[11] The minbar, a kind of pulpit from which the khutbah was traditionally given, also became a standard feature of congregational mosques by the early Abbasid period (late eighth century).[12][13]

The mihrab area of the Umayyad Mosque in Damascus today, with the minbar to the right

In later centuries, as the Islamic world became increasingly divided between different political states, as the Muslim population and the cities grew, and as new rulers wished to leave their mark of patronage, it became common to have multiple congregational mosques in the same city.[9][10] For example, Fustat, the predecessor of modern Cairo, was founded in the seventh century with just one congregational mosque (the Mosque of Amr ibn al-As). However, by the 15th century, under the Mamluks, the urban agglomeration of Cairo and Fustat had 130 congregational mosques.[9] In fact, the city became so saturated with congregational mosques that by the late 15th century its rulers could rarely build new ones.[14] A similar proliferation of congregational mosques occurred in the cities of Syria, Iraq, Iran, and Morocco, as well as in the newly conquered Constantinople (Istanbul) under Ottoman rule.[9]

Architecture and function

Congregational mosques function as a community space.[15] As a community space, it allows for prayer and social engagement.[16] Congregational mosques have a crucial role in communities Islamic practices.[15] The Qur'an does not state architectural parameters for a congregational mosque, and as a result there are both differences and similarities between congregational mosques of different regions.[17][page needed] As all male members of the community are expected to attend Friday prayers,[1] congregational mosques must be large enough to accommodate them and their size thus varies from community to community. The Qur'an does highlight that the prayer hall has to accommodate the population of the community.[18][page needed] Almost all congregational mosques feature a minbar, which is an elevated platform where the Friday sermon is given. The minbar is usually places near the qibla wall (the wall standing in the direction of prayer) and the mihrab.[12][13]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b See:
    • M. Bloom, Jonathan; S. Blair, Sheila, eds. (2009). "Mosque". The Grove Encyclopedia of Islamic Art and Architecture. Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. pp. 548–549. ISBN 9780195309911. Islam requires no physical structure for valid prayer, which may be performed anywhere, and a minimal masjid ("place of prostration") may consist only of lines marked on the ground, but a building constructed especially for the purpose is preferred, in particular for congregational prayer at Friday noon, the principal weekly service. Such a building may be called a masjid or a jāmi (Turk. cami), from masjid al-jāmi῾ (Pers. masjid-i jāmi῾; Urdu jāmi῾ masjid), meaning "congregational mosque." This term is often rendered in English as "great mosque," or "Friday mosque," a translation of masjid-i juma῾, a Persian variant.
    • Uurlu, A. Hilâl; Yalman, Suzan (2020). "Introduction". The Friday Mosque in the City: Liminality, Ritual, and Politics. Intellect Books. ISBN 978-1-78938-304-1. The English term 'mosque' derives from the Arabic masjid, a term designating a place of prostration, whereas the term jami', which is translated variously as Friday mosque, great mosque or congregational mosque, originates from the Arabic term jama', meaning to gather.
    • Bearman, Peri (2014). "Masjid Jāmiʿ". In Emad El-Din, Shahin (ed.). The Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and Politics. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780199739356. The Friday prayer (ṣalāt al-jumʿa), which is mandatory for every adult male Muslim (Shiite Islam makes an exception if no Imam is present), came to be conducted in a large, congregational mosque, known as the masjid jāmiʿ (< Ar. jamaʿa "to assemble"), or Friday mosque. In the early Islamic period, only one Friday mosque in a community was permitted, since the address to the congregation was to be conducted by the ruler of that community. With the growth of the Muslim population, however, this became increasingly untenable.
    • Canby, Sheila R.; Beyazit, Deniz; Rugiadi, Martina; Peacock, A. C. S. (2016-04-27). "Glossary". Court and Cosmos: The Great Age of the Seljuqs. Metropolitan Museum of Art. ISBN 978-1-58839-589-4. masjid-i jami (Turkish, Ulu Cami) Congregational mosque where the male Muslim community performs the Friday prayer, during which the khutba is pronounced; also known as a Great Mosque or a Friday Mosque.
    • Petersen, Andrew (1996). "jami or jami masjid". Dictionary of Islamic architecture. Routledge. p. 131. ISBN 9781134613663. A congregational mosque which can be used by all the community for Friday prayers.
    • Esposito, John L., ed. (2009). "Mosque". The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195305135. Jāmiʿ is a designation for the congregational mosque dedicated to Friday communal prayer; in modern times it is used interchangeably with masjid.
    • Fleet, Kate; Krämer, Gudrun; Matringe, Denis; Nawas, John; Rowson, Everett (eds.). "Friday prayer". Encyclopaedia of Islam, Three. Brill. ISSN 1873-9830. All schools but the Ḥanbalīs require that Friday prayers be held in a physical edifice; the Ḥanbalīs hold that they can be performed in a tent or in the open country. The schools of law differ on the number of participants required to constitute a valid congregation for Friday prayers: the Shāfiʿīs and Ḥanbalīs require forty, the Mālikīs twelve, and the Ḥanafīs only two or three praying behind the imām (in each case, counting only persons obligated to perform the prayer). Such limitations had significant practical repercussions, as when the Ḥanafī authorities of Bukhārā prevented the performance of Friday congregational prayers at a congregational mosque (jāmiʿ) erected in a substantial community in the region in the fifth/eleventh century and ultimately razed the building (Wheatley, 235). Shāfiʿīs further required that Friday prayers be held at only one place in each settlement. Until the fourth/tenth century, the number of Friday mosques (designated congregational mosques with a pulpit) was severely limited, even in major metropolitan centres; in later centuries, Friday mosques proliferated to accommodate the needs of urban populations (Wheatley, 234–5).
    • Ettinghausen, Richard; Grabar, Oleg; Jenkins, Marilyn (2001). Islamic Art and Architecture: 650–1250 (2nd ed.). Yale University Press. p. 20. ISBN 9780300088670. They were thus not only religious buildings but also the main social and political centres, as implied by the construct al-masjid al-jami῾, usually translated as congregational mosque.
    • Hattstein, Markus; Delius, Peter, eds. (2011). "Glossary". Islam: Art and Architecture. h.f.ullmann. p. 610. ISBN 9783848003808. Mosque (Ar.: masjid, Turk.: cami, Engl.: "place of prostration") The general term masjid refers to mosques that could be used every day. The particularly important Friday (or congregational) mosques, where the communal Friday worship is held, are called masjid-i jami or -i juma.
  2. ^ a b c Bearman, Peri (2014). "Masjid Jāmiʿ". In Emad El-Din, Shahin (ed.). The Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and Politics. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780199739356. The Friday prayer (ṣalāt al-jumʿa), which is mandatory for every adult male Muslim (Shiite Islam makes an exception if no Imam is present), came to be conducted in a large, congregational mosque, known as the masjid jāmiʿ (< Ar. jamaʿa "to assemble"), or Friday mosque. In the early Islamic period, only one Friday mosque in a community was permitted, since the address to the congregation was to be conducted by the ruler of that community. With the growth of the Muslim population, however, this became increasingly untenable.
  3. ^ Fleet, Kate; Krämer, Gudrun; Matringe, Denis; Nawas, John; Rowson, Everett (eds.). "Friday prayer". Encyclopaedia of Islam, Three. Brill. ISSN 1873-9830. All schools but the Ḥanbalīs require that Friday prayers be held in a physical edifice; the Ḥanbalīs hold that they can be performed in a tent or in the open country. The schools of law differ on the number of participants required to constitute a valid congregation for Friday prayers: the Shāfiʿīs and Ḥanbalīs require forty, the Mālikīs twelve, and the Ḥanafīs only two or three praying behind the imām (in each case, counting only persons obligated to perform the prayer). Such limitations had significant practical repercussions, as when the Ḥanafī authorities of Bukhārā prevented the performance of Friday congregational prayers at a congregational mosque (jāmiʿ) erected in a substantial community in the region in the fifth/eleventh century and ultimately razed the building (Wheatley, 235). Shāfiʿīs further required that Friday prayers be held at only one place in each settlement. Until the fourth/tenth century, the number of Friday mosques (designated congregational mosques with a pulpit) was severely limited, even in major metropolitan centres; in later centuries, Friday mosques proliferated to accommodate the needs of urban populations (Wheatley, 234–5).
  4. ^ Mitias, Michael H.; Al Jasmi, Abdullah (2018). "Form and Function in the Congregational Mosque". Estetika: The Central European Journal of Aesthetics. 55 (1): 25–44. doi:10.33134/eeja.169.
  5. ^ M. Bloom, Jonathan; S. Blair, Sheila, eds. (2009). "Mosque". The Grove Encyclopedia of Islamic Art and Architecture. Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. pp. 548–549. ISBN 9780195309911. Islam requires no physical structure for valid prayer, which may be performed anywhere, and a minimal masjid ("place of prostration") may consist only of lines marked on the ground, but a building constructed especially for the purpose is preferred, in particular for congregational prayer at Friday noon, the principal weekly service. Such a building may be called a masjid or a jāmi (Turk. cami), from masjid al-jāmi῾ (Pers. masjid-i jāmi῾; Urdu jāmi῾ masjid), meaning "congregational mosque." This term is often rendered in English as "great mosque," or "Friday mosque," a translation of masjid-i juma῾, a Persian variant.
  6. ^ Pedersen, J.; Hillenbrand, R.; Burton-Page, J.; Andrews, P.A.; Pijper, G.F.; Christie, A.H.; Forbes, A.D.W.; Freeman-Greenville, G.S.P.; Samb, A. (1991). "Masd̲j̲id". In Bosworth, C.E.; van Donzel, E.; Lewis, B.; Pellat, Ch.; Heinrichs, W.P.; Dijkema, F. Th.; Nurit, S. (eds.). Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition. Vol. 6. Brill. pp. 655–656. Linguistic usage varied somewhat in course of time with conditions. In the time of ʿUmar there was properly in every town only one masd̲j̲id d̲j̲āmiʿ for the Friday service. But when the community became no longer a military camp and Islam replaced the previous religion of the people, a need for a number of mosques for the Friday service was bound to arise. This demanded mosques for the Friday service in the country, in the villages on the one hand and several Friday mosques in the town on the other. This meant in both cases an innovation, compared with old conditions, and thus there arose some degree of uncertainty. The Friday service had to be conducted by the ruler of the community, but there was only one governor in each province; on the other hand, the demands of the time could hardly be resisted and, besides, the Christian converts to Islam had been used to a solemn weekly service. (...) The great spread of Friday mosques was reflected in the language. While inscriptions of the 8th/14th century still call quite large mosques masd̲j̲id, in the 9th/15th most of them are called d̲j̲āmiʿ (cf. on the whole question, van Berchem, CIA, i, 173-4); and while now the madrasa [q.v.] begins to predominate and is occasionally also called d̲j̲āmiʿ, the use of the word masd̲j̲id becomes limited. While, generally speaking, it can mean any mosque (e.g. al-Maḳrīzī, iv, 137, of the Muʾayyad mosque), it is more especially used of the smaller unimportant mosques.
  7. ^ Esposito, John L., ed. (2009). "Mosque". The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195305135. Jāmiʿ is a designation for the congregational mosque dedicated to Friday communal prayer; in modern times it is used interchangeably with masjid.
  8. ^ Quran 62:9–11,Quran 62:10–11
  9. ^ a b c d e Esposito, John L., ed. (2009). "Mosque". The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195305135.
  10. ^ a b Pedersen, J.; Hillenbrand, R.; Burton-Page, J.; Andrews, P.A.; Pijper, G.F.; Christie, A.H.; Forbes, A.D.W.; Freeman-Greenville, G.S.P.; Samb, A. (1991). "Masd̲j̲id". In Bosworth, C.E.; van Donzel, E.; Lewis, B.; Pellat, Ch.; Heinrichs, W.P.; Dijkema, F. Th.; Nurit, S. (eds.). Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition. Vol. 6. Brill. pp. 644–706.
  11. ^ a b Esposito, John L., ed. (2009). "Khuṭbah". The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195305135.
  12. ^ a b Petersen, Andrew (1996). "minbar". Dictionary of Islamic architecture. Routledge. pp. 191–192.
  13. ^ a b M. Bloom, Jonathan; S. Blair, Sheila, eds. (2009). "Minbar". The Grove Encyclopedia of Islamic Art and Architecture. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195309911.
  14. ^ Behrens-Abouseif, Doris (2008). "The Mamluk City: From Fustat to al-Qahira". In Jayyusi, Salma K. (ed.). The City in the Islamic World (Volume 1). Brill. pp. 295–316. ISBN 9789004171688.
  15. ^ a b Mitias, Michael H.; Al Jasmi, Abdullah (2018). "Form and Function in the Congregational Mosque". Estetika: The European Journal of Aesthetics. 55 (1): 25. doi:10.33134/eeja.169. ISSN 2571-0915.
  16. ^ Trevathan, Idries; Aljalhami, Mona; Macleod, Murdo; Mansour, Mona, eds. (2020). The Art of Orientation: An Exploration of the Mosque Through Objects. Munich Germany: Hirmer Publisher. pp. 20–21. ISBN 978-3-7774-3593-0. OCLC 1229090641.
  17. ^ Imbrey, Jai, ed. (2017). Mosques : splendors of Islam. Rizzoli New York. ISBN 978-0-8478-6035-7. OCLC 975133976.
  18. ^ Frishman, Martin; Khan, Hasan-Uddin, eds. (1994). The Mosque: History, Architectural Development & Regional Diversity. New York: Thames and Hudson. ISBN 0-500-34133-8. OCLC 31758698.