Mahgol Seirafian Baboldashti, Seyedeh Marzieh Tabaeian, Ahmadreza Shirvani Dastgerdi


Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque is one of the most beautiful and salient examples of Iranian architecture of the Safavid era, in Isfahan. Despite the scientific studies on the architecture of this mosque, its sacred and semantic concepts have been overlooked behind its hidden values. Therefore, the Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque has been studied as a human-made place using the phenomenological approach to architecture, in order to understand the importance of inducing the concept of genius loci; and by examining each of the elements and comparing them to the ideas and components of place. The authors try to answer the question that what environmental qualities of the Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque build its genius loci? The research method used in this paper was phenomenology and information were gathered by library studies. The result of the research indicates that this Mosque has significant values, including semantic load, and there is a relationship between its elements and their material and semantic qualities created by concepts such as enclosure, span, and space. Thus, this integrated logical system confers Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque a genius loci which has been a meaningful quality of this space throughout the centuries and continues to remind the future generations of Iranian cultural identity.


Genius loci; Phenomenology; Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque; Natural Ideas

Full Text:



A. Dahar and R. Alipour, “Geometric Analysis of Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque in Isfahan: Determining the Relationship of the Prayer Room with the Forecourt of the Building,” Q. Bagh Nazar, vol. 10, no. 26, pp. 33–40, 2013.

M. Hejazi, “Geometry in nature and Persian architecture,” Build. Environ., vol. 40, no. 10, pp. 1413–1427, 2005.

C. Norberg-Schulz, “Genius Loci: Towards a Phenomenology of Architecture,” Genius loci: Towards a phenomenology of architecture. p. 212, 1991.

P. Partuiee, Phenomenology of the place. Tehran: Islamic Republic of Iran Art Academy, 2008.

J. K. Grütter, “Ästhetik der Architektur Grundlagen der Architektur-Wahrnehmung,” 1987.

D. Seamon, “The phenomenological contribution to environmental psychology,” Journal of Environmental Psychology, vol. 2, no. 2. pp. 119–140, 1982.

N. Ardalan and L. Bakhtiar, Sense of Unity. Tehran: Science Architect, 2011.

A. Madanipour, Design of urban space: an inquiry into a socio-spatial process. John Wiley & Son Ltd, 1996.

K. Afshar-Naderi, “From User to Location,” J. Archit., no. 6, 2000.

L. Medqalchi, M. Ansari, and M. Bemanian, “The Spirit of the Place in the Iranian Garden,” Q. Bagh-Nazar, vol. 11, no. 28, pp. 25–38, 2014.

H. Nasr, Knowledge and Spirituality. Tehran: Sohrevardi Research and Publishing Office, 2001.

B. Vasiq, A. Pashootnizadeh, and B. Mohammadreza, “Place and Housing in the Viewpoint of Islam,” Interdiscip. Stud. Holy Qur’an, no. 3, pp. 93–101, 2009.

A. Noqrehkar, M. Hamze-Nejad, and M. Dehghani-Tafti, “Investigating the Impact of the Natural Environment on Behavior and Ethics from the Point of View of Islamic thinkers and its Results in Designing the Artificial Environments,” Arman Shahr J., vol. 3, no. 5, pp. 79–96, 2010.

R. M. Sani, “A CONCEPTUAL UNDERSTANDING FOR TEACHING THE HISTORY OF ISLAMIC ARCHITECTURE : AN IRANIAN ( PERSIAN ) PERSPECTIVE Rafooneh Mokhtarshahi Sani,” Archnet-IJAR, Int. J. Archit. Res., vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 233–244, 2009.

V. Taqvaiee, “The hidden space system of Iranian architecture and its structure,” Fine Arts J., no. 30, pp. 43–52, 2007.

S. Jahanshahi, “The collection of mosque patterns with light hierarchy approach to perception space of architecture (Case Study: Ganjalikhan Mosque and Sheykh Lotfollah Mosque,” J. Sci. Res. Dev., vol. 2, no. 2, pp. 174–180, 2015.

M. Bemanian and S. Silvaieh, “Investigating the role of the dome in shaping the center of the mosque architecture,” Arman Shahr Archit. Urban Des. J., vol. 5, no. 9, pp. 19–30, 2012.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2018 Journal of Islamic Architecture

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.



Department of Architecture, Faculty of Science and Technology
Universitas Islam Negeri Maulana Malik Ibrahim Malang
Jalan Gajayana 50 Malang, Jawa Timur, Indonesia 65144
Phone (+62) 341 558933(+62) 341 558933, Facsimile (+62) 341 558933(+62) 341 558933
e-mail: /


Lisensi Creative Commons

This work is licensed under CC-BY-SA

© All rights reserved 2015. Journal of Islamic Architecture, ISSN 2086-2636, e-ISSN 2356-4644


view my stats

Flag Counter