الرئيسية / المواد العلمية / قسم المشروعات / مشروعات خارجية / THE AL-ASKARIYYAIN SHRINE IN SAMARRA- IRAQ, RESTORATION PROJECT

THE AL-ASKARIYYAIN SHRINE IN SAMARRA- IRAQ, RESTORATION PROJECT

 

 

 

 

THE AL-ASKARIYYAIN SHRINEIN SAMARRA- IRAQ RESTORATION PROJECT

(TECHNICAL REPORT)

BY
Prof.Dr. Abdelfattah Elbanna

Conservation Center of Archaeology, Manuscripts and Museum Objects
Faculty of archaeology – Cairo University
Submitted to

UNESCO – Iraq Office
July, 2009

CONTENT

Foreword

1. PREFACE

2.SAMARRA, IN THE HISTORIAN WRITINGS

3. LOCATION AND DESCRIPTION

4. AL-ASKARIYYAIN SHRINE DEVELOPMENT

5. STRATEGY OF THE PROPOSED MEASUREMENTS & INVESTIGATIONS

6. ITEMS OF CONSULTANCY WORKS

6.1. The historical and archaeological documentation studies which include;

6.1.1. The origin of Samarra and its development.

6.1.2. The design of shrine style in history.

6.1.3. The archaeological and architectural analysis for the shrine.

6.1.4. Data collecting from the previous studies.

6.1.5. Significance of the shrine, both in the past and the present.

6.2. The Site Inspection and Observation

6.2.1. Carved structural elements such asstalactites (Muqarnas) and Niches (Pishtaq).

6.2.2. Decorative architectural elements such as cresting, and mosaic tiles

6.2.3. Decorative elements such as carved stucco, metal grilles and carved woodwork.

6.3 In situ measurements

6.3.1. Endoscopic investigations of the interior wall structures.

6.3.2. Penetration test on the mortar.

6.3.3. Flat jack in the compression relaxation test.

6.3.4. Schmidt Hammer hardness tests.

6.3.5. Field-Portable X-ray Fluorescence analysis for pigments and marble degradation.

6.3.6. Ultraviolet induced visible-fluorescence in the examination of decorative elements

6.3.7. Digital photo-imaging of the historic material monuments to be studied

6.4. Architectural Documentation Studies

6.4.1. Documentation of the present state of the site

6.4.2. Preparation of the degradation maps of the shrine buildings by sketching

6.5. Structural Stability Analysis Studies

6.5.1 Evaluation of the shrine building and specification of crack pattern

6.5.2. calculation of the safety factor

6.5.3. Structural analysis using Numerical Modeling Methods

6.6. Building Materials and Fine Arts Studies

6.6.1. Tests on stones and brick.

6.6.2. Tests on mortars and plasters.

6.6.3. Laboratory tests on the materials of decorative elements.

6.6.3.1. Test on marble tiles and its material of Fixation

6.6.3.2. Tests on glazed tiles (Qashni) and its material of Fixation

6.6.3.3. Tests on Stucco and ornaments

6.6.3.4. Tests on Pigments and coloured pastes

6.6.3.5. Tests on Metals

6.6.3.6. Tests coloured Glass

6.7. Tests will be carried out on the treated Samples with polymers.

6.8.Tables of materials of restoration and its quantities.

6.9.Rehabilitation of historical buildings studies

6.10. Urban planning studies and rehabilitation of the monumental surrounding areas

7- METHODOLOGY

References

Appendix 1- Equipments to be used for studies

Appendix 2- Key Expert for Team Work

Appendix 3- Curriculum Vitae of Staff Members
Foreword

Based on the pioneering role of the Cairo University and the prosperous efforts of the faculty of archaeology and Conservation Center of Archaeology, Manuscripts and Museum Objects in solving the threats affecting our national heritage and the architecturalin particular, which plays an important role in our advancement and in defining our cultural and civilization identities, monument restoration and preservation is considered one of the most important challenges of this age. This is due to the increase in population activities close to these monuments. This led to the destruction of many monuments that represent pivotal links in the Egyptian history chain.

 

The Conservation Center of Archaeology took the initiative and establishedthe engineering consultingunit for engineering restoration including the structural and architectural restoration to contribute pivotal role of fulfilling the needs of the Egyptian and Arab markets and providing them with the qualified high standard staff specialized in restoration of monumental and historic buildings in Egypt and the Middle East.

 

The Conservation Center has been introduced this new specialization in the field of monumental restoration. Amonumental building is a whole entity that reflects the general concept of the architectural ideology of its age. This entity encompasses structural and functional values and it holds many of the civilization aspects of the age and environment during which it was built. It goes without saying that handling a historic architectural work must be done in accordance with its philosophy and style in order not to change, distort, or falsify them. Thus, the monumental buildings engineering restoration is an architectural work in reality that is subject to the rules and basics of architecture with its own style.  Monument restoration projects are among the high standard engineering works that depend on the cooperation of the efforts of an integral team of qualified and experienced specialists. This work also requires a full understanding of the monumental buildings’ nature and their importance. The consultingstudies depend on the analytical and scientific method based on the following specialist pivots

Construction works, measurements, and survey observations studies

Photographic and photogrammetric examinations studies

Soil mechanics and foundation studies

Monumental buildings constructional balance studies

Analytical studies and characteristics of ancient construction materials

Sanitary and drainage utilities studies

Lighting networks studies and their relation to the monumental structure

Fine art restoration studies for the ornamental elements

Rehabilitation of historical buildings studies

Urban planning studies and rehabilitation of the monumental surrounding areas

 

Due to the special nature of the studies conducted in historical andmonumental areas, the Center seeks the help of a team of highlyexperienced teaching staff both on the local and international levels, specialized in preserving the architectural heritage and restoring differentmonumental buildings to ensure the scientific and artistic high standard ofthe restoration and conservation process.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prof.Abdelfattah Elbanna

Faculty of Archaeology

Cairo University

 

1. PREFACE

 

 

 

The site of the Al-Askariyyan shrine is located in the Iraqi city of Samarra 125 km from Baghdad, within the ancient city walls of Samarra. It is one of the most important Shi‘ah mosques in the world, built in 944 A.D. This site consists of historic buildings partially by a surrounding wall on the all sides.                                                                                                                                          The city of Samarra is home to the al-Askariyyain shrine which contains the mausoleums of Ali al-Hadi and Hasan al-Askari, the 10th and 11th Shi’i imams respectively as well the cenotaphs of the sister of the former and the wife of the latter. Because of this the town has become a significant pilgrimage destination. It had gained in importance in the middle of the 9th century when the 10th Shi’i Twelver imam Ali al-Hadi settled in it in 236/851. Al-Mutawakkil brought him from al-Medina, where he used to teach, and settled him in virtual house arrest therein the neighborhood of al-‘Askar. After his death in 254/868 al-Hadi was buried in the courtyard of his house and the imamate passed to his son al-Hasan al-Askari who was buried next to his father when he died in 260/873. Near the tombs is the basement of al-Ghaybah from which it is believed that Hasan al-Askari’s son, the twelfth imam Muhammad al-Mahdi disappeared in 264/878 and will return to bring justice to the world. The tombs and basement began to attract religious visitors seeking the intercession of the holy men. The influx of pilgrims boosted the economy of the town. A British officer who visited it in the middle of the 19th century describes as a walled city with a population of about a thousand living in 250 houses as shown in Figure (1).  In 1936 the Iraqi government pulled the wall down and converted the eastern gate into a museum for the archaeological finds of old Samarra.Unfortunately, the historic buildings were severely damaged by two explosions, as we see them today, the shrine and related buildings have survived. Its golden dome was demolished by an explosion in February 2006 and its two remaining minarets were destroyed in another explosion in June 2007, causing widespread destruction in Al-Askariyyan Shrine and clock tower. One would expect such high buildings to be razed to the ground during those severe bombings that stricken few years ago, for in those days, reinforced concrete and steel girders were unknown. The builders of historic buildings always strived to make domes and minarets as high as possible, to reach “up to heaven” and so inspire both awe and solemnity. Almost of these buildings showed instability problems as the collapsing of golden dome, minarets, and roofs, fracturing of fired bricks. In addition to, all these buildings show signs of degradation and deterioration, which affect their aesthetic value.So, to prevent the complete loss of so-famous historic structures, monitoring, investigations, and test examination of consolidation treatments have to be studied using the modern techniques.

 

 

 

Figure 1:Aerial view showing Samarra city in 1921 A.D.

 

2. SAMARRA, IN THE HISTORIAN WRITINGS
In the middle of the 9th century, Al-Mu’tasim founded the newly city of Samarra on the eastern bank of the river Tigris, 125 km north of Baghdad. The first large Abbasid building project in Samarra was an unfinished octagonal city, al-Qadissiyyah, begun and later abandoned by the fifth caliph, Harun al-Rashid (770/786-193/809). Forty-one years after that date al-Rashid’s son, the eighth caliph al-Mu’tasim found that his stay in Baghdad had become untenable because a section of the population was opposed to his succession to the caliphate and wanted his nephew instead and there was growing resentment against the Turkish soldiers whom he had recruited from Central Asia.[1] In 224/838 he took the decision to leave Baghdad and build a new capital in Samarra.

Initially al-Mu’tasim’s choice fell on a stretch of land about 4.5 km2 in area east of al-Qadissiyyah. While construction was in progress he decided to move further north and the construction of the new city of Surra Man Ra’a, the official name of al-Mu’tasim’s city, began. The new site was protected by the River Tigris from the west, Nahr al-Risasi canal from north and east and Nahr al-Qa’im and Nahr al-Sawwan from the south. The height of the terrain defended it against floods and there was ample room for expansion to the north and south. Today all that remains of the city are the traces of two streets and the walls of scattered buildings, (Figure 2).

 

Figure 2: Showing the plan of 9thcentury Samarra
Key of plan; 1) Present town of Samarra, 2) Great Mosque, 3) Dar al-Khalifa,4) Abu Dalaf Mosque,
5) Race courses, 6) Balkuwara Palace, 7) Qasr al-Ma’shuq, 8) Qubbat as-Sulaibiyya
9) Qadisiyya, 10) Istablat, 11) Naher al-Assisi, 12) Nahr al-Ishaqi.

At the centre of the site al-Mu’tasim built Dar al-Khalifa (government house) and he laid out a monumental avenue, about 100 m wide to link it to the southern end of the city. He built the Friday mosque about four kilometers south of Dar al-Khalifa, contrary to the practice of grouping together the mosque and official residence that had persisted for two centuries. In 221/834 he built a larger Friday Mosque, Jami’a al- Malwiyya, named after its spiral minaret, to cater for the increased population.[1].                                                       Al-Mu’tasim brought craftsmen and materials from various parts of the Muslim world to work on his extensive construction projects: papyrus makers from Egypt, glass blowers from Basra and potters and mat weavers from Kufa. They came with their families and settled in the new capital city. As in Baghdad, development here spilled over to the other side of the River Tigris. The remains of al-Ma’shuq palace, built by al-Mu’tamid (256/870–279/892), are still standing opposite Dar al-Khalifa. One and a half kilometers south of al-Ma’shuq is Qubbat as-Sulaibiyya, built by al-Muntasir’s mother on the axis of the Great Mosque. Both buildings are constructed of brick slabs made of rough gypsum which is found in abundance in Samarra. Nearby are remains of other buildings among them two palaces: Qasr al-Haruni built by al-Wathiq (227/842-232/847) who was buried in it and north of it al-Mu’tasim’s pleasure resort, Qasr al- Juss. Al-Mu’tasim’s successor, al-Wathiq (227/842–232/847), made the mistake of not naming a follower. The Turkish officers used their considerable influence to name the next caliph. Their choice fell on al-Wathiq’s brother al-Mutawakkil (232/847–247/861) who was a prodigious builder. He expanded the government house complex, laid out more avenues and two large horse racecourses and built several new palaces. He ordered the construction of a subterranean waterway to feed the pools and cisterns of the government house, racecourses and the large fountain in the sahn of the Friday mosque.[2]To the south of the town he built the Balkuwara palace, the best preserved of the Samarra buildings, for his son al-Mu’tazz. During al-Mutawakkil’s reign the town of Surra Man Ra’a reached its peak of greatness. Its population in the middle of the 9thcentury was close to a million [3]. About ten years into his reign, al-Mutawakkil moved his capital to Damascus to escape the intrigues of the Turkish military but they forced him to return two months later. In 245/859 or 246/ 860 he set about the construction of al-Mutawakkiliyyah, a new walled town 36 km north of Surra Man Ra’a. It was to be the culmination of his passion for architecture. It covered an area of 112.5 hectares and was linked to Surra Man Ra’a by a 15 kilometer long boulevard, 180 meters wide flanked by canals on both sides. Next to the town al-Mutawakkil ordered the construction of a second Friday mosque, Abu Dalaf, also with a spiral minaret. He initiated the construction of a gigantic canal, 60 km long, fed from the Tigris north of Tikrit which went through the centre of his city. After spending several hundred thousand dirhems his engineers abandoned the attempt. Al-Mutawakkil only lived nine months and three days in his new capital before being assassinated by the Turkish guards in collision with his son and successor al-Muntasir who left his father’s capital and returned to Surra-Man Ra’a. According to al-Duri the main reason for al-Muntasir’s act was his father’s hatred of the Shi’a whom the son admired and supported.Thanks to the wealth and stability of the Abbasids and the confidence necessary to push through projects, Samarra grew very quickly to become what may be termed the first world city in history. In every branch of life: philosophy, science, music, medicine, mathematics, art and architecture there was outpouring of energy. A cash-based economy created during the early Islamic world meant a massive amount of coinage was put into circulation, leading to urbanization and revitalization of commercial life which attracted scientists, scholars and craftsmen from the rest of the Muslim world as well as the towns and cities of Byzantium and Persia.

 

 
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[2]It consisted of two tunnels; one to carry water during winter and a lower one for use in summer. It had silt traps and inspection chambers for maintenance and ventilation. Such canals were in common use in Iraq and Iran. A manual for their design written by Abu Bakr Muhammad Hasan al-Hasib al-Karkhi entitled “Anbat al-Miyah al-Khafiyyah”  (Types of Hidden Waters) was published in 407/1016.

 

 

3. LOCATION AND DESCRIPTION

 

 

 

Figure 3: Map of Iraq
The present city of Samarra is situated on the eastern bank of the River Tigris, 125 km north of Baghdad. It is built on some of the remains of the 9thcentury Abbasid capital, which stretched about 9 km to the south of the present city and 25 km to its north. The studied area of the Samarra city is located in the middle Iraq as shown in Figure (3) , at the Latitude 36° 11/ 56// N and Longitude 43° 52/ 26// E. The Tigris River, flowing from north to the south through Iraq, divides the Samarra site into two distinct geomorphologic provinces. Because of the poor quality of the soil of the town the land on the west bank of the river was developed as agricultural estates. A bridge of boats was laid across the river at the same position of the present barrage. Irrigation canals were dug, fed from the old Ishaqi River.[1 ]Shrine Description: Al-Askariyyain shine is one of five mausoleums in Iraq. Their design is the culmination of a process that began with Qubbat as-Sulaibiyya in Samarra at the end of the 9thcentury and reached its zenith under the Buyids at the beginning of the 11thcentury when the plan of the shrine first took its present shape. Its central chamber and surrounding vestibules concentrating their axes on the single central focal point, the tomb, represents the highest expression of the spiritual life of Muslims because it echoes the centralization of God in the universe.

 

 

 

 

 

The shrine building is set in a vast sahn, barren as is the case with all shrines in Iraq, unlike mausoleums in Iran, India which are set in vast gardens with ponds, fountains and water canals. The area of the sahn is 9400 m2. This makes it the largest of the four shrines of this type in Iraq. Paved in white marble, it is surrounded by a boundary wall clad in white marble and in colouredtiles above. Along the boundary wall, facing the sahn are 60 identical iwans.

There are four portals; the main one to the south is Bab al-Kibla; above it is a clock which was donated byMuhammad Hasan al-Shirazi in 1295/1878, (Figure 5). High quality fired brick was the preeminent material of construction and the bricks around the gates are laid in decorative patterns. The doors are of timber, double-leaf. The areas above the heads of the doors are covered in decorative tiles.

The central tombs chamber was surmounted by a golden bulbous dome, in 1285/1868-9 it was covered with gold-plated bronze panels, (Figures 6). The double-shell domes satisfied the need for high visibility and exterior monumentality on the one hand and a harmonious interior space on the other.

Figure 4: Satellite Image showing, Samarra city

Figure 5: Satellite Image showing, Al-Askariyyain shrine
Attached to the main south facade is a rectangular verandah, it consists of a high central portion flanked by low wings on the sides following the Hiri style.[2]The verandah leads to the shrine through a pishtaq in the middle of the south wall, (Figure 7). A pishtaq is a formal gateway composed of an arch set within a rectangular frame. The inside of the vault above the pishtaq is decorated with sheets of gold. Above the door are multi-tiered muqarnas vaults clad in a mosaic of geometric mirror pieces, (Figures 8, 9 and 10).

Left and right of the main façade two slender minarets rise about 35 m from cylindrical bases. Each minaret consists of two shafts separated by a covered balcony supported on tiers of muqarnas vaults. These are the only structural muqarnas units in the building; elsewhere, in the entrance pishtaq and under the squinches of the domes they are decorative elements made of plaster and suspended by means threads from the vaults. Under the muqarnas vaults are Quranic verses. The minarets were built in 606/1210. In 1285/1886 the Qajari sultan Nasir Ed-Din Shah had them clad in gold-plated bronze panels during the 1880’s. Passing through the portal, one enters the riwaq which runs around the central sanctuary. Its total length is 109 m and it is five meters wide, its floor is paved in white marble and its walls are decorated with mirror mosaic.

The external surfaces of the riwaq walls are clad in marble, above its which are decorative glazedtiles. The walls punctuated by five door openings in each side. The doors are made of timber, covered by embossed sheets of silver. The door facing the pishtaq is decorated with gold and covered with sheets of glass.  Each door opening is bridged by a pointed arch. The roof of the riwaq consists of 16 domes connected by short runs of slightly pointed vaults. This gives five domes to each side; the central ones and those at the corners have skylights on their apexes, the other eight domes are solid. Silver doors lead from the riwaq into the haram, the inner sanctuary which contains the tombs of the imams and four of their relatives. Above each tomb is a carved wooden box; one of them is dated 1109 and carries the name of the Safavid sultan Shah Hussein.

Around the tombs is a cage (shubbak) of silver grille. Above it is a protruding cornice decorated with gold leaves. Rods carrying golden pomegranates are fixed to the four top corners of the cage. The cage was brought to Samarra from the shrine of Imam Hussein in Karbala in 1360/1941 and is the latest of several ones made at different periods using various materials and designs.

Above the haram is a double-shell dome, the largest of all the Shi’i shrines in Iraq. The domes sit on a drum five meters high pierced by 12 windows bridged. The structural system may be, a tripartite arrangement of square base, octagonal zone of transition, and dome is standard for all the four Shi’i shrines in Iraq, (Figure 6). Under the corner arches are tiers of shallow non-structural muqarnas. The architect of the shrine used decorative muqarnas vaults to mark significant spaces in his design. Under the drum is a ring of glazed colouredtiles on which is inscribed the Quranic sura (al Fath) and the name of the Qajari Sultan Nasir Ed-din Shah. Above the windows is another band of calligraphy and a third one runs around the bottom of the dome. They are executed in thulth on a background of yellow tiles. The remainder of the internal dome is decorated with mirrors.

 

[1]An old canal built by the Sassanians to irrigate the land between Tikrit and the depression of Agarguf west of Baghdad.  Almu’tasim dredged the section between Tikrit and Samarra.
[2]This style was invented by one of the kings of the pre-Islamic city state al-Hira in west Iraq. It consists of a raised central part flanked by lower wings on both sides, emulating the formation of an army in battle. According to a 10th century source it was made popular by al-Mutawakkil who used it in the design of one the palaces in his new city of al-Mutawakkiliyyah.
 

Figurer 6: General view showing, the shrine buildings

 

Figure 7: Main veranda of al-Askariyyain shrine, leading to entrance pishtaq, left and right of the main façade two slender minarets rise about 35 m from cylindrical bases.
 

 

Figures 8,9 and10: Multi-tiered muqarnas vaults with mirror pieces mosaic, the shrine dome covered with gold-plated bronze panels, and the main façade clad with decorative glazedtiles.

 

 

 

Figures 11 and 12: Marbles used as floor paving, gold-plated bronze panelsin walls and mirror piecesmosaic clad.

 

 

 

Figures 13 and 14: Gold-plated bronze panelsandthe cage made of silver grille

 

 

The explosions

Al-Askariyyain shrine was the target of two terrorist attacks using large quantities of high velocity explosives. The first explosion which took place in February, 2006 demolished the dome, (Figures..).Some of the debris from the outer dome fell on the roof of the riwaqs and destroyed it. Large pieces of the inner dome, some about 20 m3 weighing over 30 tons fell inside the haram, destroyed the grilled cage around the cenotaph and created depressions in the floor below it and around it. The gold-plated panels cladding the dome and minarets were dispersed over the site and on the roofs of adjacent buildings as far as one kilometer away. The dome which was built of bricks and gypsum mortar was not strong enough to resist dynamic loads of this magnitude. As a result the entire external dome and more than half the inner dome were blown away and fell on the other parts of the structure and damaged them. Explosives were also placed at the entrance of the Ghaybah basement and inside it; they damaged the surfaces of its ceilings and walls and destroyed the entrance verandah. The second explosion which took place in June, 2007 demolished the two minarets. The debris from one of them fell on the western verandah and from the other on the eastern wall breaking them both down, (Figures 15,16,17,18 and 19).

 

 

 

Figure 15: East wall           Figure 16: Drum of the dome        Figure 17: Minaret

 

 

 

Figures18: General view, the shrine after explosion.

 

 

Figure 19: Aerial view after explosion

4. AL-ASKARIYYAIN SHRINE DEVELOPMENT

 

Imam Ali al-Hadi, the tenth imam, died in 254/868 and was buried in the courtyard of his house; when the eleventh imam, his son Hasan al-Askari died five years later, he was buried next to his father in 254/868. In 289/902, a window opening was made in the boundary wall of the house; through which people could pay their respect to the two graves. In 333/944-5, Nasir al-Dawla al-Hamdani, governor of Mosul, fortified the city, erected a simple enclosure around the two graves and maintained the house. He built houses around the shrine for the use of visitors to the graves. In 337/948-9, Buyid leader Mu’ízz al-Dawla changed the plan of the building to turn it into a mazar (pilgrimage place) and refilled the court of the house with new soil. The reason for changing the new soil was pilgrims had got into the habit of taking handfuls of the soil from the floor of the sahn, which they considered to be holy because the imams had sometimes used it for the purpose of tayammum (dry ablution). This created depressions in the floor of the sahn which the builders had to refill with new soil. Also, he repaired the basement, sahn and boundary walls, built a dome over the tombs, erected a wooden surround around them and managed salaries for the personnel.

In 368/978-9, the Buyid leader Adud al-Dawla replaced the timber surround in the haram with one made of teak wood. He enlarged the sahn and riwaqs, repaired the haram and curtained the tombs with brocade. In 445/1053, another Buyid leader, Arsalan al-Basasiri, replaced the dome with a larger one built of fired clay tiles and covered in gypsum rendering. He renewed the teak surround and fixed golden pomegranates on its top corners. In 495/1106, the Seljuk Berkiarook bin Malikshah renewed the gates and repaired the dome, riwaqs and sahn. In 606/1209-10, the dome was repaired, this time by the Abbasid caliph, al-Nasir li-Din- illah who also erected the two minarets giving the shrine its present form. He placed a carved wooden door before the imams’ prayer niche inside the basement; the date of the work (606/1209) is carved on the door. He also enlarged the town and renewed its fortification and built the Friday mosque next to the shrine. In 750/1349-50, the Jalarid prince Sheikh Hasan Abu Aws restored the dome and minarets and transferred a number of graves to the desert. In 914/1508-9, Shah Isma’il bin Safi ad-din, the first Safavid sultan of Iran supplied two boxes to be placed above the cenotaph in the haram. In 930/1523-4, Shah Tahmsap rebuilt the dome, riwaq and decorated the tombs. In 1033/1623-4, Shah Abbas rebuilt the tomb of Ali al-Hadi and repaired the domeand sahn. In 1106/1694, the sanctuary caught fire from one of the candles and the wooden boxes above the cenotaph were totally destroyed. The last Safavid, Shah Hussein, ordered the manufacture of four ornamented wooden boxes, one for each tomb[1]and a steel cage to go around the cenotaphs. He also maintained the structure and paved the floor of the haram with marble.

In 1200/1785-6,Ahmed Khan al-Dunbali, governor of Azerbaijan and his son Hussein al-Dunbali rebuilt the boundary walls following the style of the Haidari shrine in Najaf. He built a new staircase from the hall of the mosque leading to the al-Ghaybah basement. In 1225/1810, Emir Hussein bin Ahmad al-Dunbali covered the dome of the mosque with tiles. In 1250/1834, Sheikh Zain al-Abidin al-Salmani built a new city wall paid for by a group of Indian Muslims. The old wall was presumably destroyed by the floods during the rule of Dawood pasha. In 1258/1842, Maharaja Amjed Ali Shah rebuilt city wall in 1258/1842. In 1285/1868-9, Nasir ed-din Shah al-Qajari repaved the sahn, riwaq and haram and replaced the steel cage above the cenotaph with a silver one with a golden top. During his reign the dome and minarets were clad in gold-plated bronze panels. He introduced the use of mirror mosaic to decorate the walls and ceilings of the al-Ghaybah basement.

In 1295/1878, Muhammad Hasan al-Shirazi strengthened the walls of the shrine and built two rooms in the sahn. He added a clock to Bab al-Kiblah. He established a religious school and built houses, khans, bridges, bath houses and markets. Samara became centre of learning. In 1316/1898, Hajj Fathi Ali Sultan Abadi rebuilt south and north riwaqs. In 1322/1905, Piped water supply was installed. In 1339/1920-1, Muhammad Taqi al-Tehrani replaced the wooden door of the basement with silver one decorated in gold. He provided teakwood windows with coloured glass for the drum of the dome. In 1343/1924-5, electricity supply was provided. In 1349/1931, shoes stores (Kishwaniyya) in both sides of the north verandah were built by Hasan Sayyed Hadi al-Sadr. In 1355/1936, twenty-five gold plates were stolen from the dome. In 1356/1937, two more gold plates were stolen from the door of the haram together with other silver ornaments from inside the haram. In 1360/1941, a cage, brought from the shrine of Imam Hussein, was placed above the cenotaph. In 1368/1948-9, main south verandah erected, paid for by Hajj Abdul-Wahid Hajj Sukkar. In 1368/1948, upper band of calligraphy in pishtaq of south verandah executed. In 1376/1956, new cenotaph cage, made of silver grille was brought from Iran. In 1379/1959, calligraphy above Bab al-suq and upper band of northern verandah executed.

In 1386/1966, the haram was provided with wall to wall carpeting paid for by merchants from Baghdad. Marble in sahn was repaired by Iraqi government. Repair work was carried out on the golden dome. Verandah was built on the north side of al-Mahdi mosque. In 1382/1962-3, golden boxes were placed above tombs, and three of the riwaq gates were covered with glass. In 1385/1965, repair work was carried out on the minarets. In 1386/1966, the boundary iwans around sahn were renewed. In 1390/1970, lower band of calligraphy in pishtaq of south verandah and inside surface of Bab al-Qibla executed. In 1394/1974, bands of calligraphy in inner dome and on boundary wall west of Bab-al-Suq executed. Decorative muqarnas vaults of dome completed. In 1399/1979, a new silver cage decorated with pieces of gold was placed over the cenotaph. The south door of the riwaq was replaced with a new golden door, both manufactured in Iran. In 1400/1980, Iraq’s Ministry of Religious Affairs renewed one of the two minarets, repaired the tombs, and installed central heating and air-conditioning systems and fixed crystal chandeliers inside the sanctuary. In 1410/1990, the walls of the sahn and haram were clad in Italian marble.

The house and tombs remained in their original state until 333/944-5 when the Hamdanid Nasir al-Dawla enclosed the tombs with a wall and built houses around the shrine for the use of ulama and pilgrims which shows that the city of Samarra had by that time become an established pilgrimage destination. The principal builders of the shrine were the Buyids (Buwayhids). Mu’ízz al-Dawla Ahmed bin Buyu (Buwaih) was the first to build a dome over the tombs in 337/948-9; thirty years later Adud al-Dawla added riwaqs (vestibules)and the shrine first took its final form. The dome he built was of mud bricks; seventy-four years later, another Buyid leader, al-Amir Arsalan al-Bassasiri, replaced it with one built of baked bricks. In 750/1349-50, when the Jalarid prince Sheikh Hasan Abu Aws began his rebuilding project the sahn had become a popular burial ground for people seeking the imams’ benediction for their deceased loved ones. He transferred a number of graves to a desert cemetery but this did not entirely stop the practice.
[1]The two other tombs belong to the sister of al-Hadi and wife of al-Askari.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 20: the addition construction by Nasir ed-din Shah al-Qajari in 1871 A.D.

 

 

 

 

Figure 21and 22: The shrine from north-east, and an addition of clock to Bab al-Kiblah by  Muhammad Hasan al-Shirazi 1878 A.D.
5. STRATEGY OF THE PROPOSED MEASUREMENTS & INVESTIGATIONS

 

The objective of studies and investigations approach, but not limited to determination of actual material properties, determination of the deterioration level of existing components related to the sudden accidents and the identified environmental conditions, generation of analytical modeling to predict stress and deformation levels and to identify critical areas and components requiring remedial work, determination of suitable materials for restoration and retrofitting that are compatible with existing materials, development of repair techniques, monitoring and evaluation of structures after retrofitting and development of maintenance procedures to guard against further reduction of structural and historical integrity. On the other hand, the investigations of different decorative materials aim acquiring the complete knowledge of the used ancient material and the recently chemical treatments to elaborate a systematic plan for its restoration and conservation. Performing detailed measurements on the site and representative samples to the existing decorative materials by new techniques in situ or removal to the testing laboratory and provide useful indications about the characteristics of materials. Helping us decide identification tool to monitor the relative degradation, crack pattern, and microclimatic measurements.

Extensive biodeterioration damage of mural paintings and wooden objects occurs occasionally in historic buildings. So, in addition to the above mentioned equipments common systems the procedures will employed for the successful isolation, identification and treatment of bacterial and fungal growth.

The black crusts can be considered the accumulation areas of atmospheric deposition and products of stone degradation reactions. In order to identify the components present in the black crust and other incrustations, compounds and elemental analysis by X-ray diffraction, Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), coupled to an X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) system, Microscope investigation using the polarizing microscope.

Deteriorating phenomena on an ancient stained glass mirrors include: colour loss, stains, enamels and hardening of traditional mastic. The hardening of mastic, which removes any flexibility from the leads, causes permanent deformation of panels and the breaking of pieces of glass under the effect of explosions pressure. Additional causes of deterioration of the ancient stained glass are thermal movements and vibrations.

The corrosion of metallic antiquities and works of arts means the process which resulting substances remains upon the metal. Preservation of metal antiquities with its techniques of cleaning, consolidation, stabilization will run in our studies for this project.

Almost without exception, depending on climate, microclimate and other conditions, woodworks are attacked by various wood-destroying insects and sometimes also by fungi. Thermal degradation of wood is dependent on time as well as temperature. These factors lead to decrease of wood strengths. From a mechanical point of view, the survey consists of measurement of wood moisture content, structural degradation (failures and other similar damages) and biological degradation (insect attack and decay).

 

 

 

6. ITEMS OF CONSULTANCY WORKS

A technical report will present by the CCAMOexperts team includes historical documentation,, site location, package, transporting and store the deterioration decorative elements and building materials, samples locations as well as  the following items:

According to the historians records, writings, old documents and description of old Travelers the archaeologist will study the history of Samarra and its extension through the ages. They will focus on the development of Al-Askariyyan shrine.

6.1. The historical and archaeological documentation studies which include;

6.1.1. The origin of Samarra and its development.

6.1.2. The design of shrine style in history.

6.1.3. The archaeological and architectural analysis for the shrine.

6.1.4. Data collecting from the previous studies.

6.1.5. Significance of the shrine, both in the past and the present.

 

6.2. The Site Inspection and Observation

The field trip toinspect the site of Al-Askariyyan shrine to locate the places from which samples will be taken using the coring machine. In addition to, the team work will study the present situation of the following components of the shrine.

6.2.1. Carved structural elements such asstalactites (Muqarnas) and Niches (Pishtaq).

6.2.2. Decorative architectural elements such as cresting, and mosaic tiles

6.2.3. Decorative elements such as carved stucco, metal grilles and carved woodwork.

 

6.3 In situ measurements:

In order to determine the deteriorated parameters, which affected the structural, architectural and decorative elements, a series of preliminary physical measurements, should carried out with traditional field instruments. In particular, measurements will make have: environmental temperature (T), relative humidity (RH) and surface temperature (ST) of the walls. The parameters T and RH will used to calculate derived values such as the dew temperature (Td), i.e., the temperature at which condensation of water vapour contained in the air occurs, and specific humidity (SH), i.e. the quantity of vapour actually present in the environment. In addition to, the following in situ measurements:

6.3.1. Endoscopic investigations of the interior wall structures.

6.3.2. Penetration test on the mortar.

6.3.3. Flat jack in the compression relaxation test.

6.3.4. Schmidt Hammer hardness tests.

6.3.5. Field-Portable X-ray Fluorescence analysis for pigments and marble degradation.

6.3.6. Ultraviolet induced visible-fluorescence in the examination of decorative elements

6.3.7. Digital photo-imaging of the historic material monuments to be studied

 

6.4. Architectural Documentation Studies

Update of the old maps, plans, sections and elevations using architectural analysis technique. As well as the specification and signification of internal and external elevations, niches, arches…etc before and after the explosions.The documentation works will be in drawing sheets by deferent scales as following:

6.4.1. Documentation of the present state of the site and shrine buildings by sketching and reports;

a) Site plan, (1/200)

b) Floor plans, (1/50)

c) Sections, (1/50)

d) Internal and external elevations, (1/50)

e) perspectives

 

Monument Degradation Map:

After the definition of the structural and architectural deterioration components, we should specify and signify these results on Sheets that show all the boundaries of the monument/site under consideration. This system should allow decision makers to have a better idea on the state of mainDeterioration factors of the site.

 

6.4.2. Preparation of the degradation maps of the shrine buildings by sketching;

a) Floor plans, (1/50)

b) Sections, (1/50)

c) Internal and external elevations, (1/50)

d) Critical element details, (1/20), (1/10), (1/5), (1/2) and (1/1)

 

6.4.2 Digital photos of the selected structural, architectural and decorative elements, under study, along with references to the analytic relief, a detailed photograph album and CD will submit.

 

 

6.5. Structural Stability Analysis Studies

Through the development of numerical analysis and the use of computers of large capacity, the problems of structural stability have been approached in respect of their time-dependent behaviour. As such, the analysis of the total state stresses assumes that the combined action of overburden stress and the explosion pressure on the dome, minarets, and masonry structure are very necessarily in equilibrium. A major portion of this investigation will also deal with the identification of the type of failures affecting the load bearing walls in contact with the dome mass. The assessment will run of the various analytical techniques to determine the current and further instability problems of walls. Therefore, it exist also, the most important problem of establishing the adequate geotechnical properties of the masonry structure, in the best way characterizing simulated processes of the stability.

6.5.1 Evaluation of the shrine building and specification of crack pattern

6.5.2. calculation of the safety factor

6.5.3. Structural analysis using Numerical Modeling Methods

Using two and / or three Dimensional Simulation Methods as following;

a) Finite Element Method

b) Finite Differences Method

c) Distinct Element Method

 

 

6.6. Building Materials and Fine Arts Studies

 

Useful tests that we propose listed below, depending on the decorative materials to be examined: The Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), coupled to an X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) system, Microscope investigation using binocular and polarizing microscope, studying pigments and dyes samples using infrared spectrometry analysis and XRD. Size and distribution of voids using mercury porosimetry, which used in conjunction with scanning electron microscopy. Mercury porosimetry is widely accepted as a standard method to characterize porous solids with respect to their pore volume (porosity) and pore size distribution over a wide range of pore sizes from 0.0036 μm up to ca. 400 μm. In addition, mercury porosimetry data can be interpreted in terms of particle size distributions, permeability, fractal dimension and compressibility, as well as to account for pore shapes and network effects in any porous solid. Hence, over the course of several decades, mercury porosimetry may be regarded as the most effective of the procedures employed in petrography to determine the voids content.Tests will be carried out on the various samples taken from the structural, architectural and decorative elements as following.

 

6.6.1. Tests on stones and brick.

6.6.1.1. Mineralogical and chemical analysis by using.

a) Polarizing microscope.

b) Scanning electron microscope.

c) X- ray diffraction.

d) X- ray Fluorescence.

 

6.6.1.2. Tests of physical properties:

a) Bulk density.

b) Porosity.

c) Water absorption, permeability.

6.6.1.3. Tests of mechanical properties:

a) Compressive strength.

b) Indirect tensile strength.

c) Shear strength.

d) Abrasion test.

Besides, we should calculate the needing parameters using for a simulation of the numerical molding by means of Cohesion (C), modulus of elasticity (E), Angle of fraction (f)and  Poison’s Ratio.

 

6.6.2. Tests on mortars and plasters.

6.6.2.1. Mineralogical and chemical analysis by using.

a) Polarizing microscope.

b) Scanning electron microscope.

c) X- ray diffraction.

d) X- ray Fluorescence.

 

6.6.2.2. Tests of physical properties:

a) Bulk density.

b) Porosity.

c) Water absorption, permeability.

 

6.6.2.3. Tests of mechanical properties:

a) Compressive strength.

b) Indirect tensile strength.

c) Shear strength.

d) Abrasion test.

Besides, we should calculate the needing parameters using for a simulation of the numerical molding by means of Cohesion (C), modulus of elasticity (E), Angle of fraction (f)and  Poison’s Ratio.

6.6.2.4. Durability Tests.

a) Test on effect of Salts.

b) Test on cyclic drying and  absorption.

 

6.6.3. Laboratory tests on the materials of decorative elements.

6.6.3.1. Test on marble tiles and its material of Fixation

Mineralogical and chemical analysis by:

a) Polarizing microscope.

b) X ray diffraction.

 

6.6.3.2. Tests on glazed tiles (Qashni) and its material of Fixation

Mineralogical and chemical analysis by:

a) Polarizing microscope.

b) X ray diffraction.

 

6.6.3.3. Tests on Stucco and ornaments

Mineralogical and chemical analysis by;

a) polarizing microscope.

b) X ray diffraction.

 

6.6.3.4. Tests on Pigments and coloured pastes

Mineralogical and chemical analysis by;

a) Polarizing microscope.

b) X ray diffraction.

 

6.6.3.5. Tests on Metals by;

a) Microscopic investigation.

b) X ray diffraction.

 

6.6.3.6. Tests coloured Glass by Using:

a) Light microscopes

b) Polarizing microscopes.

c) X ray diffraction.

 

6.7. Tests will be carried out on the treated Samples with polymers.

 

6.8.Tables of materials of restoration and its quantities.

 

6.9.Rehabilitation of historical buildings studies.

 

6.10. Urban planning studies and rehabilitation of the monumental surrounding areas.

Rehabilitation and revitalization of the archeological Site offer the restoration project is taken over according to the economic, cultural, touristic needs of the society and according to the international charters.

 

 

7.METHODOLOGY

The general methodology should follow the following steps

 

Scope Identification: In this step, we should define the scope of the study, and setting out the boundaries of work

– Definition of the scientific problems related to various Metal, wood, plaster, painting, mortar, glass, brick, marble and glazedtiles deterioration phenomena in selected historic monuments (i.e. erosion by rain, wind, crust formation and sudden risks such as explosions etc.): In this step, we propose to define a general “Fault Tree” for the site deterioration hazard that may occur inside any site. This method of fault tree should set up a general framework and is easy to deploy and understand. Once this general frame work is set, it would be relatively easy to set up the strategy of site observation, and calculations that would lead to the final determination of the Deterioration components inside the site under consideration.

– Monument Degradation Map: After the definition of the Deterioration components, and its associated components, we should report these results on Sheets that show all the boundaries of the monument/site under consideration. This system should allow decision makers to have a better idea on the state of mainDeterioration factors of the site.

– Digital photos of the selected decorative elements under study

– Report on diagnostic tools available in monitoring weathering phenomena

 

 

 

References

Blair, Sheila S. & Bloom. Jonathon M. The Art and Architecture of Islam, 1250-1800. The University Press, Pelican History of Art.

 

Creswell, K.A.C.. Early Muslim Architecture, Penguin Books, 1958.

Daneshvari, Abbas. Medieval Tomb Towers of Iran, Mazda Publishers in Association with Undena Publications 1968

 

Dimand, M.S.. A Handbook of Mohammedan Decorative Arts, New York, 1930.

Harris, Cyril M. (editor).  Illustrated Dictionary of historic architecture, Dover Publications, New York , 1977

 

Hattstein, Markus and Delius, Peter, (editors). Islam – Art and Architecture, Könemann, 2000.

 

Le Strange, Guy. The Land of the Eastern Caliphate. Cambridge 1930.

Michell, George (editor). architecture of the Islamic world. Thames and Hudson, 1991.

Nakash, Yitzhak. The Shi’is of Iraq. Princeton University Press, Princeton & Oxford, 1995.

Northedge, Alastair. The Historical Topography of Samarra, Samarra Studies 1, British school of Archaeology in Iraq, 2007.

 

Otto–Dorn, Katharina. De Islam, Amsterdam 1965. Translated from German into Dutch by John Kooy.

 

Strika, V. The Turbah of Zumarrad Khatun in Baghdad, Some Aspects of Funerary Ideology in Islamic Art, Annali dell’ Institutto Orientaei di Napoli, 38/2 (1978). 283-296.

 

المراجع العربية

أحمد سوسة. ري سامرّاء في عهد الخلافة العبّاسيّة. بغداد 1948.

أحمد عبد الباقي. سامرّاء عاصمة اللدولة العربيّة في عهد العبّاسيّين. بغداد 1989.

جعفر الخليلي.  موسوعة العتبات المقدّسة . الجزء الأوّل. دار التعارف. بغداد.

جواد علي. المهدي المنتظر عند الشيعة الاثنى عشريّة. (ترجمة أبو العيد دودو). كولونيا 2007

حسن أحمد محمّد و أحمد ابراهيم شريف . العالم الاسلامي في العصر العبّاسي. القاهرة 1995.

حسن منيمنة. تاريخ الدولة البويهيّة السياسي والاقتصادي والاجتماعي والثقافي. بيروت 1987.

دار الآثار. باب الغيبة في سامرّاء. 1938.

الشيخ ذبيح الله المحلاتي. مآثر الكبراء في تاريخ سامرّاء. المكتبة الحيدريّة. 1426 ه.

رشيد الخيّون. الأديان والمذاهب في العراق. كولونيا. 2007

سعاد ماهر محمّد.مشهد الامام علي في النجف. القاهرة 1969.

عبد العزيز الدوري.  دراسات في العصور العبّاسيّة المتأخّرة. بيروت 2007.

مكتب دجلة للتصميم والطباعة. دليل العتبات والمشاهد الدينية في العراق. ديوان الوقف الشيعي  بغداد 2006

 

Appendix 1- Equipments to be used for studies

 

– Tables of the instruments which are used in the testing of Samples Survaying, analytical photogrametry, CMAS… etc.

– Tables of instruments which are used for Structural Stability such as longitudinal Extensometers, defect meters, Dial Gaugues, Cracks widith measuring devices, Auto cad , Flac – UDIC.. etc.

 

1- Central station for acquisition recording,

 

2- Raytech Raytector,

 

3- Portable Long wave Vptester,

 

4- Ultraviolet Lamp (R5-FLS),

 

5- Field-Portable X-ray Fluorescence,

 

6- Digital photo-imaging,

 

7- Endoscope,

 

8- Pentometer,

 

9- Total station,

 

10- 3D Crack Gauges,

 

11- Flat Jacks,

 

12- Schmidt Hammer,

 

13- Uniaxial compressive tester machine,

 

14- X ray diffract meter,

 

15- Perkin-Elmer’s atomic absorption spectrophotometer,

 

16- Odometers.

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