This cistern, compared with cisterns in Iran has the greatest dome and is located on the eastern side of Rah Ahan (railroad) street.
The founders of this cistern are two brothers, the great warriors, of Fath Ali Shah of Qajar dynasty. It has a magnificent portal with Moaghali tiles and there are two stony platforms in its two sides.
The passageway to the water reservoir includes 47 stony stairs, the average height of each of which is 25 cm, taking the visitors 12.5 meters deep down to the water access.
The cradle pointed vault with four faucets at specific distances are among the other characteristics of this water storage. This cistern is a square of 17 meters in size and four great squinches embracing the dome and turn it into an octagon.
The construction material used in the piers is lime concrete and the thickness of the wall is about 3 meters. Also the great dome of the cistern is made up of bricks and there is a wind catcher at its uppermost with 28.5 meters of latitude. This cistern has the water capacity of 3000 m3.
Haj Kazem Cistern
Haj Kazem cistern is located at the end part of Tabriz street and regarded as the most beautiful cisterns in Qazvin. It has a magnificent portal decorated with tiles, groined vault and stony inscription. There are also 37 stairs from the portal to the reservoir faucet. The passageway to the water storage is barrel vault with pointed arch.
The resting space has Rasmibandi 12 cladding. The reservoir is rectangular plan made of lime concrete. The thickness of the cistern’s pier is about 3 meters and it has an approximate capacity of 2300 m3. Among the other features of Haj Kazem cistern is having two wind catchers of 8 meters decorated with tiles. They function as ventilators. Haj Kazem cistern has been registered as a national heritage monument with the registration number of 933.
Sardar (warrior) cistern is situated in Tabriz Street, opposite Sardar School and Mosque, established by two brothers, the warriors of Fath Ali Shah of Qajar dynasty. This cistern enjoys very beautiful tile works and there is also a marble inscription on the portal showing the date of 1229.
The passageway to the reservoir has 36 stairs and the plan of the reservoir is in a square shape, each side of which is about 20 meters. There is also a very great column at the center of this square, which bears the load of four ribs. In other words, the square design of the cistern on the ceiling is further divided into four smaller squares and each of these parts has a cupola. There is also a small wind catcher at the heart of every cupola which functions as a ventilator. The pier of the water storage is 3.10 meters and is made of lime concrete. The cistern has a water capacity of 3800 m3 and it has been registered together with the Mosque and the School of Sardar in the list of national monuments heritage with the registration number of 932.
Jame Mosuqe Cistern
This cistern which dates back to Safavid period is located at the forecourt of Jame Mosque on Shohada (Sepah) Street. It has a plain, decoration-free portal.
The passageway to the water access includes 37 stony stairs having cradle vault with pointed arch. The reservoir has a capacity of 1800 m3 and it is made of lime concrete of 2.40 meters thickness. The water reservoir consists of two brick ribs and three cupolas. As a national monument, Jame Mosque cistern has been registered with the number of 2080.
Hakim cistern is located at the end part of Sepah Bazaar on Shohada Street. The founder of this cistern was Haj Mirza Hakim and it was established in 1244. Beautiful portal and a very tall tree in front are among the characteristics of this cistern. The major construction material of the water reservoir is lime concrete. The water capacity of this cistern is about 900 m3.
Just opposite the cistern, there is also a Saghakhaneh constructed in the same year. These two can be found among the list of national heritage monument with the registration number of 1336.
Zananeh (Women’s)-Bazaar Cistern
This cistern is located at the western side of Al-Nabi Mosque (Masjed-e-Shah) which can be reached though Mesgar (Coppersmith’s) Bazaar.
At present the way down to the reservoir faucet includes 43 stairs with a vaulted and decoration-free ceiling. The underground water storage is a rectangular shape with the capacity of 2350 cubic meters. The diameter of pier is 1.60 meter wide made of lime concrete. In early times, the interior of the cistern used to be ribbed vault which later after being demolished turned into four great standing columns and consequently creating smaller intercolumniation. Zananeh-Bazaar cistern has had wind catchers all of which are hidden behind the walls of bazaar and mosque constructions.
Agha cistern, located near Agha Mosque behind Safa Public Bath on Molavi Street, dates back to Qajar period. Its portal is decorated with Moaghli tiles. It has 30 stairs made of stone on the way down to the reservoir faucet. Also its lowest part is 9.60 meters lower than the alley level. The water storage is a heterogeneous rectangular with piers having approximate diameter of 2.20 meters made of lime concrete. The water capacity of the cistern is about 800 cubic meters.
The whole collection of Bazar with its interesting old architecture is one of the sightseeing, attractions of Qazvin. In different parts of bazaar, there are some Mosque, Bath-house, Sara, Arcade, Qeisarieh. It is worth mentioning here that the last two are as center of commerce and workshop of craftsmen respectively. The other major view of Qazvin Bazaar are as follows:
Qeisarie Bazaar with high brick arches connecting the bazaar of Bazazha (cloth-sellers) to Saraye Vazir. Saraye Vazir is located at the southern part of Qeisarie. Saraye Vazir at eastern side of Qeisarie, Saraye Haj-Reza in south of Bazaar, Saraye Saad-alsaltane, established in Qajar dynasty, is located at southern side of Imam Khomeini Street. It is one-storey building, with a big yard, some chambers and Yazdi roof.
Bazaar of Cloth seller’s, goldsmith’s and coppersmith’s.
This construction is on Rasht (Imam) Street, opposite Eltefatieh School. It was built upon the order of Sadolsaltaneh, the then-ruler of the Qajar period. The main entrance of the construction opens from Rasht Street and a beautiful vestibule connects the street to the main court of the construction. There are many beautiful cells or chambers with verandas all around the yard. There are also smaller yards on the sides of the main yard. The eastern yard is a trade center with an independent access from Rasht Street and western yard as a/n (un)loading site, with an access from Saadieh Bazaar are two examples in this regard. The eastern side is surrounded with cells and verandas similar to the main court and as a huge pillared atore behind the eastern chamber. Saadieh Bathhouse is also in this wing. At the same time, the main yard leads to Chahar Sugh of Caravansary in the south which is the most beautiful part of the collection and unique and matchless compared with the other trade centers. There is a magnificent dome at the top of this place and there are also four half domes on its four sides, all of which enjoying absolute beauties. The site for loading and unloading goods, spacious stable for the camels, donkeys, etc. has more than one hundred brick pillars. Gheisarieh is also another beautiful part of this unique collection. Saadieh Baazar. On the west, makes an organic homogenous path in this area which starts from Imam Street and ends in Al-Nabi Mosque. There is also anther part of Saray-e-Sadolsaltaneh in the western side, including Beheshtian Caravansary, Razavi (Shah) Bathhouse and Haj Mola Agha Mosque. Saray-e-Sadolsaltaneh, with approximate area of 25700 square meters is regarded as the best and most complete traditional trade centers in Iran which is now possessed and renovated by Qazvin Cultural Heritage Organization.
The only remaining parts of the lofty structure of “Ali Qapu” in Qazvin, once as highly reputed as the present “Ali Qapu” of Isfahan, are the portal and its mosaic-tile inscription, which is by the famous calligrapher “Ali-Reza Abbassi’.
This inscription which is in Sols script set on a background of azure tiles, is extremely interesting and remarkable as regards its color combinations and calligraphic style. According to the text of the inscription, the “Ali Qapu Palace” counts as one of the important monuments dating from the reign of Shah Tahmasb and Shah Abbas. Its concluding section, which contained the date of the construction, has disappeared. The present portal was the entrance leading to the Royal Palace. There remain two side-rooms flanking the portal, which also possesses a large vestibule. The side rooms of the entrance door.
The Chehel-Sotun palace is of the royal structures belonging to the Safavid epoch. Its construction resembles that of the Hasht-Behesht edifice of Isfahan. This is a two-storey building, located in the center of a spacious park, and it possesses a large hall. When flourishing, all of its chambers and corridors were decorated with paintings and gildings, and it possessed inlaid doors and exquisite tile-works. Some of these decorations have been recovered during later reparations. The lower storey has a brick ceiling while the upper storey is covered with fine polished beams.
At present, the Chehel-Sotun edifice serves as the Museum of the city of Qazvin, in whose chambers some relics belonging to different periods, including the Safavid epoch are on exhibition.
Grand Hotel located on Peighambarieh Street, dates back to late Qajar period.
The main entrance is in the west wing with wooden covers on each side. It reaches the dividing space in the middle storey. There are pillared halls with ribbed vault on each side. These halls lead to the street on the west and to a balcony on the east, which has stony pillars and 2.90 meters above the level of the courtyard. The dividing space, through wooden stairs finds its way to the yar. All the hotel’s main rooms are in the first floor.
There are 17 rooms altogether in the first floor which have views over the street and to the yard on the east and west wings. There are also several rooms in three different floors that are smaller and linked to the service space and grand cinema as well. This hotel has housetop and ribbed vault. It has also wooden and stony pillars on its eastern and western balconies. It is the oldest Guest House still remained in Iran.
Mohammad Abad Caravansary
Mohammad Abad Caravansary is situated in Mohammad Abad village on Qazvin-Bueen Zahra road. It dates back on Safavid period. The portal of the Caravansary is located at the southern wing which, after having gone through its vestibule, one is led to the central yard of 42.30*50.40 meters.
The design of the caravansary is a four-veranda shape, which has 10 cells on the side of its entrance veranda. There are two spacious sheltered areas behind sheltered areas behind those cells. There are also 34 other small verandas in the yard. Behind those verandas, there are hallways with groined vaults and platforms on its two sides. Also there are nine towers at exterior sides which are particular characteristics of out-of-town caravansaries. Mohammad Abad Caravansary has been registered as a national heritage monument with the registration number of 1397.
This caravansary, located in Avaj at the crossroad of Qazvin-Hamedan, is regarded as one of the most important trade roads both in and before Safavid Dynasty.
Avaj Caravansary has a courtyard of 30.80*31.70 around it. Because of the cold weather in the area, the main entrance and those chambers are all made small to have a better temperature balance. There is a sheltered groined vault, which was already functioning as a stable where the animals were kept and the loading and unloading of the goods were done. This area was directly connected to the yard. The foundation was built by gravel stones. The façade of exterior walls in three directions of north, east and west were all made up of stone, which were supported by tower-like buttresses. Now one can see just the eastern wall still stands. In other parts of the construction, including the southern side, bricks have been frequently used. Avaj Caravansary was registered as a national heritage monument with the registeration number of 2177.
Hejib Caravansary is located behind a hill in Hejib village on Qazvin-Saveh road. This caravansary has a four-veranda plan with a portico on its south wing. This portico is connected to the main elevation of the caravansary with two blind arcades of 45 degrees.
There are also 14 blind arcades on each side of the portico. The yard has a dimension of 41.90*45.30 meters with four verandas in center of each side and there are eight chambers on the two sides of each veranda. Shotor-Khan (stable) of the caravansary is a covered hall with ribbed vault, which has raised platform to load and unload the goods. There is also a spring of water in the center of the yard. Hejib Caravansary with an area of 5850 square meters and 36 chambers, is considered to be as one of the most beautiful caravansaries in Iran which was registered as the national heritage under the number 1187.
Ebrahimieh School, founded by Haj Mohammad Ebrahim, is located on Akhund district at the southern part of Imamzadeh Soltan Seyed Mohammad.
The entrance lies southward and is decorated with tiles an Rasmibandi. The portico, with a 90-degree turning, is connected to the yard through hallway. The courtyard, an octagon of 9.4.*1.80 meters, is situated at the northern side of the class. It consists of s central square area and a stoa on its two sides. In the southern side of the courtyard, there is a mosque with a rectangle of 5*15 meters stretched from east to west. The chambers are in two stories on eastern and western sides, the upper with wooden and the lower with arch cladding respectively. There are 15 chambers altogether with no verandas. Ebrahimieh School with an approximate area of 460 square meters fully enjoys all basic aspects of a typical theological school. It was registered under the number of 3315 as a national heritage.
Eltefatieh School is on Imam Avenue next to Obeid Zakan Street. It was constructed by Khajeh Eltefat in Ilkhanid period. It has a two-veranda plan and one storey.
The rectangular courtyard with the bevels of 45 degrees on the corner seems to be an Octagon. The portico of this school was destroyed during the construction of nearby streets. Only one inscription was left which is now kept in the Museum of Islamic Era. Eltafitieh School has 26 chambers taught with only veranda. The portico at the southern side of the school is 3 meters lower than the school level. There is also a water-storage in the yard, which has the water capacity of 90000 liters.
This school enjoying a very simple, stony and decoration-free style was recognized as a national heritage monument with registration number of 1889.
Sheikholeslam Mosque and School
Sheikholeslam (Masudieh) Mosque and School is situated on Sepah Street near to Ali-Ghapu Portico. Early construction of this school dates back to pre-Qajar era. Then it was renovated by Haj Mirza Masud Sheikholeslam during the Qajar perion when one mosque and two side yards were added to the collection.
The school. At present, has a forecourt and the entrance portico of the school is located on its eastern wing. The portico is simple from viewpoint of decoration and reaches a vestibule with Rasmibandi 24. This vestibule is connected to the yard alongside with the entrance axis and to the side yards as well. The main court yard of the school is an octagon which has more than 30 chambers on its all around. All chambers except to those of the northern side enjoy beautiful verandas decorated with tiles and Rasmibandi. There is also a veranda with two columns in the front side with a space having dome just opposite the entrance veranda on the east wing. The unique shape of this veranda indicates the Qajar design, which has been annexed to the old veranda. The mosque of Sheikholeslam is situated on the southwest of the school with no dependency on the forecourt of the school. It was built as nocturnal prayers made up of stony pillars and tiled Mihrab. The cladding of the mosque is done with brick groined vault. Masudieh School is a one-storey structure with a basement on its northeast. It was registered as a national heritage under the number of 1335.
The Mosque and School of Sardar
The mosque and school of Sardar is located on Tabriz Street and dates back to Qajar period, 1231. Two brothers from Qajar commanders called Hossein Khan and Hassan Khan were the founders of this monuments.
The entrance door is marvelous and decorated with very nice, colorful tiles. In the southern side of this monument is a mosque standing on three brick arches. At the top of the middle arch, which is bigger than the others, is a conical dome decorated with turquoise tiles. At the western and eastern sides of the yard, there are some chambers in a two-storey building used a classrooms for the students of theology.
Jame Mosque of Qazvin
Of the complex of structure consisting the Masjid-Jame Kabir in Qazvin, the most important remaining part as regards antiquity and artistic value, is a nocturnal prayer-hall, unique of its kind, known as the “Khommar-tashi”, prayer-hall and Gonbad, which belongs to the Slajukid period.
This prayer-hall and its brick cupola count among the most beautiful monuments of the Sixth century A.H. (14th A.D.). Its plaster ornamentations, various Kufic, Thulth, Riqa and Raihani inscriptions, and excellent spiral designs bestow a particular grandeur upon this historical building. The importance of this prayer-hall lies mostly in its few plaster inscriptions, each of special value regarding the calligraphic style and beauty.
The northern inscription of the prayer-hall indicates that it has been constructed by Abu Mansur Khommar-Tash Imadi, during the reign of Malik Shah, the Saljukid monarch, and that the construction of the prayer-hall and the Gonbad has continued for seven years (507-514 A.H.=1113-1120A.D.). In another inscription, the date of its completion has been given 509 A.H. (1115 A.D.). The mosque comprises a portal, a façade, and a vast courtyard. The most ancient part of the mosque is “Majid Haruni” which adjoins the entrance corridor. On the site of this simple domed, there seems to have originally stood a four-archer fire-temple.
Alnabi Mosque (Masjid Shad) is one of the greatest mosques of Iran. The main construction of this mosque is attributed to the Safavid period and upon its remains, the present structure has been constructed in the Qajar period, by the order of Fath-‘Ali Shah.
The mosque comprises a façade of vast dimensions, four aivans, a vast rectangular courtyard, several side-rooms, a portico and a prayer-hall. Its northern portal bears an inscription as well as tile decorations. The false arches facing the courtyard possess wooden sash-windows and inside the large prayer-hall of the mosque there exists a mihrab with marble and friezes. The outer covering of the mosque huge copula is decorated with tile-work and there are sample inscriptions in beautiful calligraphic style set on tile background in this mosque.
Sanjideh Mosque is located in Rah Rey district and dates back to Saljukid period. At present, this mosque has a square rotunda space with the dimensions of 9.20 meters. Sanjideh Mosque leads to an alley from two directions of south and east with three doors in each alley. Next to the middle door of southern side where once used to be the Mihrab of the Mosque is now a small Mihrab with a different angle from the mosque’s axis. The rotunda had turned to be an octagon via four squinches and the turned into a circle by a Karbandi 16 at the top which is a honeycomb –worked dome. This is a mono-cladding dome left from Saljukind period and the height of its terminal from the ground level is 13 meters. There are also eight stairs which connect the mosque’s cellar to the ground level. This cellar is under rotunda and has an area of 10.5 square meters. At the southern side of the mosque is a small minaret of 6.80 meters high. This minaret has been annexed to the main construction and only one quarter of its structure is visible and this very reason has made the head cant of the mosque look round. Also in southeast front, mosque is round-headed with Moaghali tiles. The entrance to the mosque is westward and through newly established annexed nocturnal prayers. The stairway of the minaret is through this nocturnal prayers as well. Sanjideh Mosque, enjoying an important spiritual and historical value, has been registered as a national heritage monument under the number of 1118.
This mosque is in Bolaqi Alley. Hamdollah-e-Mostowfi and Imam Rafei’e have introduced this mosque as Jame-e-Ashab-e-Abuhanifeh. The exquisite plaster work of the mosque is the same as Jame Mosque’s which indicates the building’s oldness of construction. Its big pulpit has been brought from the city of Rey in 404.
This mosque was destroyed because of the earthquake in 513 and was reconstructed later in Amir Khomar Tash period. In Qajar dynasty, the northern balcony and several chambers to accommodate the clergymen were added to this mosque. Today, only this Mosque can be found from the whole mosque.
There is a proportionate harmonious relationship between its art plaster and brick work. Also its altar from standpoint of design and type of work is one of the best artistic samples and greatest altars in Saljuqi period. Kufi and Naskh inscriptions around the altar from form and expression point of view reflect plenty of beauty, too.
Sukhteh Chenar Mosque
Sukhteh Chenar Mosque is situated in Darb Kushk district, near to Naderi crossroad.
Panje Ali Mosque
Panje Ali Mosque is located in west side of Peyghambarieh street and dates back to Safavid period.
Mohammadieh Mosque is located in Sepah (Shohad) Street, Mohammadieh Alley and dates back to Qajar period.
Rah Chaman Mosque
Rah Chaman Mosque is situated in Rah Chaman district, Tehran-Qadim Street and belongs to Qajar period.
Molla Mehdi Mosque
Molla Mehdi Mosque is located in Molavi Street, Yakhchal Alley and belongs to Qajar period.
Khajeh Shohada Mosque
Khajeh Shohad Mosque is situated in Tabriz Street, opposite to Haj Kazem Water storage and dates back to Qajar period.
Sabz (Green) Mosque is situated in Akhund district, and dates back to Qajar period.
The holy mausoleum of Imam Reza’s immediate offspring is located at the south-western side of Qazvin. Rafei’i says: “Imam Reza, on his way to Khorasan (201 A.H.), came to Qazvin and stayed at Davood-Ebe-e-Soleiman Qazi’s home. His son, at the age of two, passed away there and was buried in the south-western graveyard of the city”.
The aforementioned construction enjoyed a very supreme structure during the 8th and 9th centuries before it was neglected for two centuries from Mongul to Safavid. Then it was reconstructed in Safavid and Qajar periods. From point of view of archeological art, tile-working and decoration with mirrors, this shrine is of prime special importance and viewed as one of the most spectacular domestic and foreign tourism attractions as well.
Peighambarieh shrine is situated on southern wing of Chehel Sotun garden on Peighambarieh Street that is said to be the resting place of four prophets called Salam, Salum, Sahuli, and Alghia. Also Saleh-ibn-Hassan (mgbhs), the infallible household of the prophet, is said to be buried here. Since the exact burial location of those mentioned prophets is not clear, the shrine has been made and named after Imamzadeh. The major construction material in this shrine is brick. The shrine consists of pillared veranda with two pairs of wooden columns, stony dado and stucco decorated walls. On the northern side of the shrine lies the school of Peighambarieh. Peighambarieh shrine does not have any portico. The yard is almost a square shape of 20 meters. The class and the chambers are arranged in three wings of the yard and there is no construction on Peighambarieh street ward. The total number of the chambers in different sizes amount to 11, some with and some without verandas. The class is situated in the south wing of the school having two square and rectangular plans, the former functioning as the rotunda and the latter as the nocturnal prayers respectively. The rotunda is an area of 6.80 meters, which is turned into a circle with Karbandi number 24. At the top it has a dome at the uppermost. This school has been registered as a national heritage under the number of 1774.
Abazar Shrine is located at the top of a mountain in a village called Abazar 20 km northeast of Qazvin. The villagers believed this shrine belongs to the son of Imam Jafar Sadegh (mgbhs).
The main construction has now been surrounded by many annexed structures. One of the major materials used in the shrine is stone which was carried from the nearby mountains. It has a double-shell dome. The dado of the mausoleum is made of tiles and as its design suggests it is most probably from Qajar dynasty. Here one can see a transenna and a gravestone with Ilkhani epigraph on the corner of the shrine. On the two sides of the entrance, there are also two stony lattices with trelliswork. One of them has an inscription. There is another inscription with 60 centimeters width outside the mausoleum showing the date 693. Although the above-mentioned parts belong to the 7th century, the form and the technique of construction of the dome is very much the same as Safavid period with new inscription on the newly-established shrine.
Ali Shrine of Shekar Nab
This shrine is located in Shekar Nab village at 20 km of Tehran-Qazvin highway. According to the villagers’ believes, it belongs to Aun-Ibn-Ali (mgbhs). The main structure of the shrine is an octagon. There are several blind arcades framed on its sides with pointed arches. The bricklaying of the wall ends up with a pyramidal dome with a drum of approximate height of 80 centimeters. In this shrine, there are four windows in four main directions. Its entrance opens to the east at the top of which lies an inscription showing the construction date as 884 A.H. As the historical documents show, there used to be a complete mausoleum to which, later on, a hall was annexed. This hall has created a right angle diversion to the entrance that leads the pilgrims to go through several corridors to the main entrance. The annexed structure doesn’t have complete homogeneous geometrical plan. It has a portal decorated with Moaghali and Arch cladding. The shrine has been registered among other national heritage monuments with the registration number of 1938.
Imamzadeh Esmail Shrine
Imamzadeh Esmail, the son of Imam Jafar Sadegh (mgbhs) is on Ansari Street. It is composed of main space of the sanctuary, four interconnected verandas on its sides as well as peripheral spaces of verandas in two stories. The plan of the sanctuary is an octagon in which four high arcades are on its four major sides linked to the verandas. There is a dome with the tile work on its outer part and krbandi and plasterwork on its inner part. The main resting place of Imamzadeh lies in the fact that the eastern and western verandas are similar due to their structures. The only difference lies in the fact that the eastern veranda leads to a street while the western veranda has been conjoined into a newly established Hosseinieh (mourning hall). The northern and southern verandas have identical and homogeneous plans with one veranda and two angels on two sides.
Imamzadeh Ali Shrine
Imamzadeh Ali Shrine, the son of Imam Jafar Sadegh (mgbhs) is between Golbineh and Panbeh Riseh district. This historical construction includes the shrine, a forecourt, an entrance and a veranda. The veranda has four pairs of stony columns with stony posts and plaster capital. There are three small verandas behind the pillars. The middle veranda has Karbandi and others have barrel vaults. Two of these entrances lead to an octagon space which is the first phase of entering the shrine. But another entrance finds its way to the shrine simply through a small passageway. The interior space of the shrine is not symmetrical but simple and spiritually very peaceful. There is also a very small dome at the top of this shrine with glazed bricks.
The shrine of Kamal, the son of Imam Mosa Kazem (mgbhs) is located in the outskirts of Zia Abad. It is an octagon plan with brick piers and blind arcade. This shrine has a double shell dome and its outer shell reveals that ninth century A.H. is the date of its construction.
The shrine of Vali, the grandson of Imam Mosa Kazem (mgbhs), is situated in central square of Zia Abad. It has a tetragon plan with blind arcade. The interior of the shrine is a very simple and decoration free. There is no exact date of its construction available; however, based on its architectural design, it is highly probable to be of Illkanid era.
Abdollah Shrine is in Frasejin and it dates back to Ilkhanid period. The main construction is an octagon with brick piers. The façade is simple which has neither blind arcade nor any decoration. There is also one cone dome at its top. Despite the fact that the annexed part seemed to be very old; however, it has been added to the structure in post-octagon-construction period. This is an area, which includes one square room and an entrance veranda.
Soltan Veis Mausoleum
Sultan Veis Mausoleum is the resting-place of Oveis Gharani. Oveis Gharani, who was a Bedouin, lived at the time of Prophet Mohammad (mgbhs), accepted Islam and became a real loyal Muslim. His life story has been re-narrated in “TAZKERAT ALOLIA” written by Attar.
The main construction is an octagon which is basically made of gravel stone and limestone. The interior sides have blind arcades and plasterwork as well. There is an altar in its southern wing with no decoration just simple muqarnas. Also, the main entrance lies in eastern side. The annexed structure is made up of stone and interconnected to south of the mausoleum. This area is a rectangular plan with a corridor and central space that has a column in the middle. Based on the style of its establishment as about the 6th century A.H. The difficult-to-carry materials and water from deep and far-off valleys shows the people’s firm determination and real devotion to their beliefs in Almighty God.
The Mausoleum of Pir
The mausoleum of Pir in Takestan is located at the southern part of Takestan neighboring the old cemetery and next to the ancient hill of Khole Kooh. The near-square plan of this construction is 6.10 *6.50 meters.
It seems once this mausoleum had a double shell dome and its outer cone dome was completely destroyed. The inner dome might have been an oval design, which later lost its original shape for the frequent renovation and reconstruction. Pir Mausoleum consists of a simple structure and dates back to the Saljukid period. The main entrance is northward and enjoys Saljukid brick decoration. There are two rectangular frames on the sides of the portico decorated with bricks. Also there are two beautiful decorated half columns on its side piers. Inside the mausoleum, there are also mural paintings of fylfot and beautiful decorations. The mausoleum of Pir in Takestan was registered as a national heritage monument with the registration number of 384 in 1949.
Ameneh Khatun Shrine
Ameneh Khatun, the daughter of Imam Jafar-e-Sadegh (mgbhs) was buried in the old cemetery of Panbeh Riseh presently called Malek Abad. The main construction, surrounded by the annexed structures, dates back to Safavid period. The interior plan of the shrine is an octagon on each side of which lies a blind arcade. Its entrance opens to the east and has a room from Qajar’s era. There were also four windows located at the top of those blind arcades with plaster lattices. Now there is only one plaster lattice left from those days which is kept in Qazvin museum and of course is of very importance. At the top of this mausoleum stands a very magnificent dome. It is a double-shell dome with beautiful tile decoration. Ameneh Khatun has been registered among other national heritage monuments with the registration number 1789.
Tomb of Hamollah Mostowfi
The brick-domed tower of the tomb of Hamdollah Mostowfi, the famous historian and geographer, ranks among the structures of the 14th century A.D. Its structure consists of a brick base, a circular body, a tile inscription, two bands of stalactite works and, higher up, a pointed conical dome which has recently been decorated with a tile covering. Under the building, there is a crypt. The text of the historical tile inscription of the structure contains the biography of Hamdollah Mostowfi as well as the title of his books.
Hamdollah Mostowfi was born in 1281 A.D. in Qazvin and lived until 1349 A.D. In 1320 A.D. he began to write his “Zafar-Nameh” which is a book in verse composed of 5000 distiches, about the history of Iran from the advent of Islam until the author’s time. One of his other works is “Tarikh-e-Gozideh” was completed in 1350. Hamdollah Mostowfi’s last book is “Nazhatal-Qulub”, which he finished in 1339 A.D. Apart from its geographical topics, the book also contains some sections in astronomy, and natural history. It counts among the most valuable books of the 14th century A.D.
Raees-Al-Mojahedin (Commandar of the Crusders) Tomb
This tomb is located at the side of Tehran-Qazvin road, near Shahid Rajaee Power Plant. The name is after Mirza Hassan, the son of Mirza Masud Sheikholeslam, known as Raees-Al-Mojahedin. He was the commander of Qazvin’s liberal movement in constitutionalism era. He passed away in 1957 and was ‘according to his will’ buried in this tomb. This is a two-storey rectangular structure with the dimensions of 12.50*15.10 meters. As it has been said, there used to be a cellar and water storage in the first storey. The second storey has a central space with a tile-decorated dome that is connected to two balconies on northern and southern fronts and to a yard through two aisles on eastern and western fronts as well. There are also four other rooms in this central space. This tomb has a sepulcher in its center and enjoys the architectural characteristics of Qajar dynasty.
Aminiha Hoseynieh, located at the end of Molavi Street, was built by late Haj Mohammad Reza Amini, one of the Qazvin’s merchants, in 1275 A.H. It is composed of three parallel halls, stretched from east to west, which re interconnected through beautiful, wooden Sash windows. The middle hall, which is bigger than the others, occupies 18 meters long and 5 meters wide. Also, the length and width of the two northern and southern halls come to 10 by 5 meters. During the meetings for the commemoration of the martyrs of Karbela, these Sash windows are removed and these three halls become one and make a big nice enclosed decorated-with-mirrors area. These Sash windows are very beautiful and considered as parts of fine arts. The Sash window of southern hall which consists of nine pieces is a latticed drawer with colored and painted glass and regarded as a masterpiece in this collection. Decorations with mirrors, wood, plaster work on walls and ceiling of the hall are put together in a very interesting and eye-catching harmony. Beneath the halls is entirely vacant and devoted to a cellar, butler’s pantry, kitchen, and a store; it is attached to both northern and southern yard.
Alamut, as one of the northern mountainous districts of Qazvin, has achieved a lot of fame for its castles which used to be the headquarters of Hassan-e-Sabbah, the head of Esmaeelieh sect, and his successors. The castle of Alamut, also called Nest of Eagle, is on a huge piece of rock in Mount Hudkan. Hassan-e-Sabbah conquered this castle in 482 and when it was the headquarters of Esmaeelieh (in 654), it was ruined by Holaku Khan of Mogul. It is sad to say that the valuable library of Esmaeelih was destroyed, too. Holaku Khan ordered the complete destruction of the library but Atamalek-e-Joeini asked him if he could keep the costly books. For this purpose, he went to the library, separated the precious book, Korans, astronomical tools from those books related to Esmaeelieh doctrines and set them to fire, the castle of Alamut was later in the hands of Gilan and Mazandaran’s rulers for a while and reconstructed as well. Then it was a political prison from Safavid period to the kingdom to Shah Abbas the first but finally when Isfahan became the capital city, Alamut’s castle turned out to be a desolated place. It had no way through anywhere but one connecting to the northward. Nowadays, walls made of stones and bricks, water reservoir and pool can be seen in this castle and outside of it some archeological vestiges do still stand.
Ghez or Girl Castle is one of the greatest and most important castles, located in 10 km north of Qazvin-Zanjan Highway.
This castle is at the top of a single stony mountain with beautiful view all around and at the same time very terrifying precipices on its three sides. The only way to the castle is through its southern wing. The ruined parts left from castle are not enough to come at the whole original picture of the castle. Among those parts of are some piers of a square dome made of stone and mortar. The legs are also very strong and have an approximate diameter of 3 meters, which are 4.80 meters away from each other. There is not enough information about this castle and its residents in the history books; however, as its architectural style and design suggests it must be from late Sassanid period or early Islamic period.
Lambsar Castle is situated in one of Qazvin province’s rural districts called Rudbar-e-Shahreshtan near Razmian village. It is considered as one of the most important castles of Esmaeelies. There is no written historical document available showing the exact time of its construction date but it seems to be of Sassanid fortification and early Islamic centuries. Lambsar Castle is at the summit of a vast mountain separated from the other neighboring lands for its rivers flowing through western, eastern, and southern mountain slopes. Since it had very dangerous and frightening precipices on its three sides, it was impossible for enemies to penetrate. Also the people and the soldiers living there could farm on its lands. That was why no sanction of whatever kind was effective.
This castle is about 480*190 meters and the difference between its highest and lowest points is about 150 meters. To build a very strong fortification, they used stone and mortar in their construction materials. The water for the castle was running through a waterway dug on the stone from Neyneh Rud River about 12 km away from the castle and stored in water storages. There was also a 95-centimeter-wide covered corridor at the lower part of the eastern wall connecting the castle at the height of 190 meters to the river via many rough stairs. Lambsar Castle is one of the greatest and most spectacular defense fortification ever made by human being.
At the northern part of Qazvin ring road and eastern side of Imamzadeh Hossein (b.p.u.h.), there is a construction made of sun-dried bricks established by Meimun-Ebn-e-Oen Kateb in the second century.
This castle has a central hall in a cross (+) shape (Chalipa) at its upper part and several symmetrical designed rooms, on its sides. Through its northern stairs, it is connected to the hall in basement and divided to four narrow corridors in the four cardinal points. There are also some vestiges of eight brick towers around the castle.
The Church Kantur known as Borj-e-Naghus (belfry) is a religious center constructed by the Russians in Iran, on Taleghani Avenue in the World War II. This small church, like other churches, has a cross plan and Mihrab eastward. The entrance of the church is on the west wing and includes foreyard with a sloped roof and a door. Then there lies a fore hall at the top of which is a belfry with an approximate height of 11 meters. The Hall is composed of a praying hall and a Mihrab around which two rectangular areas are formed. The Mihrab has a half-circle plan with a dome at the top. The praying hall has also a dome. This church has decorative pillars on its outer part.
Rafie Church is situated in the yard of Rafie School in Taleghani Street, near Sabz-e-Meidan (of Qazvin downtown). It was constructed during the period of Pahlavi the first and primarily as the educational and religious center for the Armenia dwelling in Qazvin. It is a brick-construction designed on the basis of cross plan. It means the main area is a rectangle with four-pillared columns stretched from east axis to west and has a Mihrab on its eastern wing. A three-way-closed space with several stairs makes the Mihrab separated from the rest of the construction. There are also two small rooms on the two sides for religious purposes and needs. There is a door at the west side of the church reaching the area beneath belfry. It has an octagon design with three other connecting ways to the yard. The main entrance of the church lies in the south wing with a half-circle plan, which has an identical symmetry in its northern wing. The ceiling of the church is covered with brick arch. The central space of praying hall, between the four columns and belfry is higher than other parts. Here it has also an opening. The church enjoys simple brick decorations.
Kharaqan is in southwest of Qazvin. This is an octagonal brick tower dating from the Saljukid period, decorated on all sides, as well as in the interior of its false-arches, with variegated designs. These brick decorations which comprise various patterns of design, make the tower look extremely beautiful and attractive. The tower has a brick double-dome. Inside the tower, there exist two spiral staircases leading up to the dome. The interior of the structure, possesses ample ornamentation and beautiful plaster modellings. The tomb is about 15 meters in height and 11 meters in diameter. According to Kufic inscription, the date of construction is 460 A.H. (1067 A.D.).
The second tower, located beside the first one, bears close resemblance to that dated 460 A.H. (1067 A.D.) are regards the constructional and architectural style and the decorations. The study of the text of its brick Kufic inscription, reveals that the tower has been constructed in 480 A.H. (1087 A.D.). Inside the tower, there remains a spiral staircase leading to the space between two domes (it has a brick double-dome).
The text of the inscriptions of these two tomb towers reveals their architect to have been a citizen of Zanjan. In the first tomb, his name is registered as Muhammd …Zanjani, and in the second, as Abol-Ma’ali Muhammad Ibn…Zanjani. The second tower is also one of the masterpieces of Iranian brick architecture.
Safa, renowned as Haj Mohammad Rahim, is one of the greatest bathhouses in Qazvin. Its dressing-room, pool, floor are from nice polished marbles. At the top of the dressing-room, there are four carved stony lions functioning beyond which some circular, oval stones do exist. On both sides of the entrance door, there is a portrait of two soldiers carved on marble. At the top of the entrance door, there is a marbled inscription written in Nasta’eliq (Persian style of writing used in lithography and cursive writing) which shows the date of construction as 1259.
Akund Bathhouse is situated in Akund district and belongs to Pahlavi I period.
Bolur Bathhouse is situated in Molavi Street, Maghlavak district and dates back to Qajar period.
Haj-Molla Taghi Bathhouse
Haj-Molla Taghi Bathhouse is situated in Molavi Street, near to Salehieh School and dates back to Qajar period.
Haj-Mir Hassan Bathhouse
Haj-Mir Hassan Bathhouse is located in Molavi Street, Dimaj Alley and dates back to Qajar period.
Khan Bathhouse is located in Rasht (Imam) Street and dates back to Qajar period.
Dodar Bathhouse is located in Saadi Street and dates back to Qajar period.
Rahrey Bathhouse is situated in Rahahan Street, near to Sardar waterstorage and dates back to Qajar period.
Razavi Bathhouse is situated in Molavi Street, near to Alnabi Mosque and belongs to Qajar period.
Sardar Bathhouse is located in Tabriz Street and belong to Qajar period.
Saidieh Bathhouse is located in Tabriz Street and dates back to Qajar period.
Qajar Bathhouse is located in Obeyd-e-Zakani Street and dates back to Safavid period.
Now Bathhouse is located in Bazaar Crossroad and dated back to Qajar period.
Qazvin, like many other cities in the past, was protected against attacks of enemies with trenches and fences all around. The only way in and out of the city was through its gateways. The total number of gateways in Qazvin was 8 in Qajar period. There were Maghlavak, Tehran, Rah Rey, Panbeh Riseh, Rah Kushk, Rasht, Sheikh Abad, and Khandagh Bar, out of which Tehran and Rah Kushk still stand.
Tehran Qadim (Old) Gateway
This gateway, located at the beginning of Tehran Ghadim (Montazeri) Street, dates back to Qajar period. It has a brick structure with one major portico and two communication ways on its sides. The portico in the middle is higher and wider and has pointed arches while the doors on the sides have half-circle barrel vaults. Tehran Ghadim Gateway is decorated with beautiful tiles and its main entrance has Karbandi. It has also eight minarets.
Rah Kushk Gateway
Rah Kushk Gateway is at the end side of Naderi Street left from those Qajar’s fences. Unlike Tehran Ghadim, Rah Kushk Gateway has only one façade towards out of the city. It has an entrance with half-circle arch and there are blind arcades and four minarets at its sides. Rah Kushk Gateway enjoys beautiful tile decorations.
Shemiran Collection is located near Ghezel Ozan River in Tehran District. Shemiran castle has been frequently mentioned and described in various books and it seems this area used to be a thriving city in early Islamic era.
This castle is situated at the summit of a high mountain surrounded with crags on three sides with one way-in and huge fences all around.
Great Tower or Sasan Castle
This tower, an octagon plan, is located at a high hill. It is made up of stone and limestone.
It is the same as Sasan Castle from point of view of plan but of course with smaller size.
Ghasem Shrine is a rectangular plan composed of several separate spaces made of gravel stones, it have domes and grinned vault. This shrine, most probably, dates back to Ilkani or Safavid period.
This is a small construction built in Sassanid-like square dome style.
There are also remainders of two ruined towers from those ancient time which look like Great Tower.