Menar Jonban of Isfahan was built as a mausoleum for “Amo Abdullah”, the mystic and ascetic of the Ilkhani era, and its grave consisted of a large marble stone that covered all the grave, and the all-around of the grave was carved into the Sols Calligraphy of Yassin Sura. but this monument has special features that Sometimes it is unique in Iran and the world.
At a certain time
At that time, on the tomb of “Amo Abdullah”, only a monument was built without a minaret, a building containing a brick porch, which provided a place for pilgrims of this hermit. But the history of this simple and valuable monument was changed, 300 years after the construction of the tomb of Amo Abdullah. The Safavid scientists built two minarets on this mausoleum to make it different from other buildings in the city of Isfahan.
But why should a mausoleum be made for a mystic Muslim during the time of the Ilkhanis? And why Safavid, in order to make this building more beautiful, uses its own engineers and architects to create a beautiful and magnificent building on the grave of this hermit? The answer to these questions should be searched in the particular period of the life of this hermit, he lived under the rule of al-Ja’itou Khan, and to understand the conditions of that period, we must pay a little attention to the life of this Ilkhani ruler.
Sultan Mohammad Khodabandeh – Al-Ja’ito
Al-Ja’ito, who was baptized in the Christian name of the Nicola, became a Buddhist after a while, then he accepted Islam and following the religion of Abu Hanifa. Apparently, the ugly debate that took place in the presence of Ilkhan between the jurisprudents of the Hanafi and Shafi’i religions seemed effected Al-Ja’ito to change his religion to Al- Shiite.
Representatives of these schools of jurisprudence have brought such ugly and inadvertent accusations to Al-Ja’ito and he hurt by both. After the debate with Allamah Helli and Nezam al-Din Maraqie, he took Shi’i as his religion. Al-Ja’ito at the first action, ordered to remove the names of Abu Bakr, Omar and Othman from the Friday prayers sermons and coins.
For this reason, the Shia hermit became the owner of the tomb. And, it Was considered during the Safavid rule, when Isfahan became the capital of Iran. In their own way, the Safavid not only did not destroy ancient buildings, but revived them and added to their architectural value. Some locals believe that this vibration is the result of Abu Abdullah’s dignity. But we should remind you that this building is not the only building that has such an ability. In Ardakan Yazd, you can see the first Menar Jonban of the world in the historic city of Kharanegh. And it must be said that these shakes are the result of the special architecture of this building, and not for the dignity of this mystic person!
What separates the Menar Jonban of Isfahan from other buildings in the world is that if you shake the 7.5 meters’ minaret, then the entire building, not just the other minaret, shakes. Because of the greatness of the building and its low degree of shaking, it’s hard to see the tremors of all the points, and only the minarets are easily seen. This is due to the fact that on each one the bells are installed that clearly show the movement. For this reason, they usually put a glass of water on the tomb to understand the vibrations better and clear. This unique performance over the years has become a puzzle for architectural and structural engineers. Visitors from all around the world, going up to shake one of the minarets and then they cause the vibration of next minaret.
Why Does It Shake?
The question of why the minarets are shaking are being evaluated by some university professors and the most believable theory is that it is the product of the “Zeunas” process. But the existence of light construction materials in the upper part of the building, the low altitude of the minarets, the distance between each minaret and the building, the wooden coils used in the upper and lower parts of each of the two minarets, are effect the process of shaking minarets.
Of course, for some time, the shaking of these minarets has also been targeted, and you will not be allowed to shake it whenever you want, and on certain occasions or with the prior coordination, visitors may be allowed to see this art of Safavid architecture. The decision was made for the persistent and non-systematic act of visitors which was damaging the Menar Jonban of Isfahan, and occasionally some bricks were removed from this 800-year-old monument, and it increases the possibility of further damage to this monument.
How to Visit Menar Jonban of Isfahan
Entering the Atashgah (Fire Temple) road in Isfahan and heading towards Najafabad, in the past, the Menar Jonban building was a part of a village called Carladan, but is now part of the city of Isfahan and it is located near a neighborhood called Nasr Abad.