Byron and the Shrine of Khoja Abu Nasr Parsa

An unknown force seems to be squeezing it upwards. It is the 30th of May 1934 when Byron writes in his travelogue that he is in Balkh, where he spent the whole day. In this entry, Byron also describes a monument: the Shrine of a spiritual leader, that died in 1460 c.e.: Khoja Abu Nasr Parsa….

Mullah Hassan-i Kashan Shrine and square Kufic

is remarkable for a domed stalactite ceiling It is the 12th April 1934 and Byron’s just paid a visit to the tomb tower of Chelabi Oghlu. After that, he reports his visit to the Shrine of Mullah Hassan-i Kashan. What Byron writes about it is only that the most interesting feature of this monument is the…

The Shrine of the Twelve Imams

The Shrine of the Twelve Imams, for example, has a frieze of Kufic On the 20th of March 1934, Robert Byron visited, together with the Friday Mosque of Yazd and the Vaqt-i Sa’at, the Shrine of the Twelve Imams, located in the same city. Byron’s mention of the monument is very brief: “The Shrine of the…

A shrine as the center of the city: Mashhad-i Fatima

a good group with its tall gold dome and four blue minarets Robert Byron stayed in Teheran for a while before going towards Isfahan. After he visited the monuments of Bastam, next to Tehran, he did not visit any other monument, and we do not know the exact reason for this. After he had visited…

The Masjid-i Shah of Mashhad: a fairly atypical mosque

“a ruined mosque in the bazaar“ When Byron is in Mashhad in December 1933, it seems that his whole days are spent at the small and peaceful shrine of Khvajah Rabi’, as he himself writes under the entry dated 24th December 1933. In fact, he also visited another monument in those days: the Masjid-i Shah….

Imam Reza Shrine

A gold dome flashed, a blue dome loomed, out of the cold autumnal haze The Imam Reza Shrine is by far the most important and most articulated monument of Mashhad, and probably Iran. It is also one of the biggest religious complexes in the world, with a total area of about 598,657 m2. So big that…

Qadamgah Shrine

The sun struck the tiles, which glittered blue and pink and yellow against the dark foliage and lowering sky One of the least known monuments that Robert Byron visited during his journey is for sure the shrine in Qadamgah. Byron arrived there on the 16th of November 1933 and took a photo of the small shrine….

The Tomb of Uljaytu or the Dome of Sultaniyya

One thinks of Brunelleschi The Tomb of Uljaytu is the first great monument Robert Byron saw in Persia as he would recall 6 months later his first visit, on the 12th of October 1933. On that occasion, Byron praise the monument as an example of Central Asian greatness and virility [sic!]. The ‘gigantic memorial’, in…