Masjid Essentials

Library Creche Offices Shoerack Imam's office Bookshop Entrance area Itikaf (quiet room) Offices Women's ablutions (Wudu) Meeting rooms and Classrooms Canteen and Kitchen Men's ablutions (Wudu) Mortuary Mihrab, an alcove in the wall to show the Qiblah, the direction of Makkah Minbar, raised platform where the Imam gives his Khutbah Main prayer room Crescent Dome: cools in hot weather and improves acoustics for the Imam's khutbah Women's prayer room Minaret from where the Adhan or call to prayer is made either by a Muezzin or a recording

An example of a large mosque* or masjid which shows the separation of men and women, a library, and an itikaf for prayer, reflection and Qur'anic study during Ramadan.

Areas to be included in a Mosque: these can be applied to the pictures here and to an original design.
  • For learning there might be a library or a school called Madrassah and an Itiqaf is a place of Qur'anic study and prayer.
  • Dummy colcs for indicating times of prayer.
  • Minbar (essential), raised platform where the Imam gives his Khutbah. Opposite a respondent may copy the Imam on the dikkah. A Kursi is a place to rest the Qur'an.
  • Imam's office (essential): Historically there was a Maqsura near the Qiblah wall which was a place of protection for the Imam and especially a visiting Khalifah.
  • Mihrab, an alcove in the Qiblah wall (essential)
  • Outside there may be an approach, a decorated Porch, and even a Mortuary.
  • Men's ablutions (Wudu) (essential) and Women's ablutions elsewhere (essential if women are to attend).
  • Canteen and Kitchen perhaps. There can be a separate Office or two.
  • Men's prayer room (essential) which may be partly covered and uncovered in a courtyard (Haram and Sahn).
  • Women's prayer room (essential if women are to attend) or a screened off area for women. The style of Muslim prayer is not compatible with the mixing of the sexes.
  • Minaret (one of more) from where the Adhan or call to prayer is made either by a Muezzin or a recording (essential).
  • (Star and) Crescent may be on the Minaret. As well as representing the Universe it was a sumbol of the Ottoman Empire. There may be a Dome for circulating air and improving the acoustics and there collonades and arcades for shade (riwaqs).

Madrassah: school for children to learn Arabic and the Qur'an Minbar: the tower from which the Muezzin or loudspeaker makes calls to prayer Itiqaf: a place to study the Qur'an and pray especially during Ramadan Office Creche: for youngest children Imam's Office, near the Qiblah wall (which as a Maqsura was once done for security) Men's Prayer Room Men's Prayer Room Kursi: the place where the Qur'an is put Dikka: a platform where a respondent copies the Imam so that other worshippers can see what to do, this especially in big mosques Minbar: the platform where the Imam leads worship Qiblah wall which faces Makkah Mihrab: the alcove which shows which is the Minbar wall and can be highly decorated Collonades or area of Riwaqs Sahn: the courtyard Sahn: the courtyard Men's Ablutions Five dummy Clocks showing times to pray Women's Ablutions Women's Prayer Room

A mosque is simply a place to pray. The whole world is a mosque and Muslims may pray anywhere except dirty places. The interior cannot contain any statues or pictures of God, Muhammad (pbuh) or anything sacred. The carpet in the prayer room may indicate spaces for prayer.

* Drawn again inspired from Clinton, C., Lynch, S., Orchard, J., Weston, D., Wright, A. (1999), Religion in Focus: Islam in Today's World, London: John Murray, artwork by oxford illustrators Ltd., 68-69.