Monday, January 25, 2010
The Masjid-i Jahān-Numā (Persian: مسجد جھان نما, the 'World-reflecting Mosque'), commonly known as the Jama Masjid of Delhi, is the principal mosque of Old Delhi in India. Commissioned by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, builder of the Taj Mahal, and completed in the year 1656 AD, it is the largest and best-known mosque in India. The name Jahān-Numā comes from Persian meaning "World-reflecting". It lies at the origin of a very busy central street of Old Delhi, Chandni Chowk.
The later name, Jami Masjid, is a reference to the weekly Friday noon congregation prayers of Muslims, Jummah, which are usually done at a mosque, the "congregational mosque" or "jāmi' masjid". The courtyard of the mosque can hold up to twenty-five thousand worshippers. The mosque also houses several relics in a closet in the north gate, including an antique copy of the Qur'an written on deer skin.