Kul Sharif Mosque
In 2005, in memory of the legendary mosque of the Kazan Khanate Era, the Kul Sharif Mosque was erected within the Kazan Kremlin complex, alongside the Annunciation Cathedral. This was done on purpose: symbolizing the commonwealth of the coexistence of the two religions on the same land. The mosque is designed to hold 1,500 people at any one point. The dome of the building resembles a traditional "Kazan hat", which the Khans used to wear. The somewhat traditional interior is complemented by an extraordinary chandelier weighing two and a half tons made in the Czech Republic based on sketches of Tatarstan artists, and the floors are carpeted with luxurious Persian carpets. The mosque’s outer appearance is especially remarkable for those who come to admire it at night, illuminated from all sides. The five-story mosque also houses the Museum of Islamic Culture.
Only a few of the original descriptions and images of the ancient mosque have survived and been passed down to present day. It was headed by Seid Kul Sharif. He led the city’s defense and was killed during the siege of Kazan. According to legend, the outlines of the mosque burning in the fire left such an impression on the army who witnessed the events that it was decided to perpetuate the memory of it in the guise of St Basil's Cathedral in Moscow, built in honor of the capture of Kazan.
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