- Asian, European teams to participate in Iran's Fencing World Cup
- Obama emphasizes the need for a final agreement with Iran
- Rouhani reaffirms Iran enrichment right
- IAEA inspectors confer with AEOI officials
- Iran, Iraq to boost cooperation in reconstruction of holy Shrines
- Iran’s envoy in Lebanon meets Egypt’s Heikal
- Friendship with Iran benefits all, official
- Kyrgyz minister calls for cooperation with Iran
- Islamic Jihad rep. stresses Islamic unity
- Turkey police raid Kurdish town hospital
Qom is thought to have existed in pre-Islamic ages. Archeological discoveries indicate Qom as a residential area from the 5th millennium BCE.
According to the pre-Islamic relics and historical texts, Qom was a large city.
‘Kom’ was the name of the ancient rampart of the city of Qom, thus, the Arabs called it Qom during the Arab conquests of Iran, Iranchamber wrote.
It was during the reign of second caliph that the Muslims captured Qom. During the persecution of Alavids by the Abbasid and Umayyad tyrants, many Alavids fled to Qom, making it their permanent home.
Caliph Al-Ma’mun sent forces to Qom in 825 AD, resulting in a public massacre and widespread destruction.
In 831 AD, upon hearing of the demise of Al-Ma’mun, the inhabitants of Qom revolted and were successful in overthrowing the representative of the caliph. However Al-Ma’mun’s successor, Al-Mu’tasim, dispatched forces to Qom to curb the riots and once again the city was set aflame.
The unrest continued until the Buwayhid Dynasty (Al-e Bouyeh in Persian) came to power, being of the Alavid community. It was during this reign that the city of Qom expanded and thrived.
In the Seljuk Era, the city flourished once again.
During the first wave of the Mongol invasion, the city witnessed destruction, but after Mongol rulers, particularly Sultan Oljaitu Khodabandeh of the Ilkhanate Dynasty, converted to Islam, the city received special attention, thus witnessing a revival once again.
In the late 14th century, the city was plundered by Tamerlane when the inhabitants were massacred again. During the rule of Qarah-Qoyounlou, Aq-Qoyounlou, and especially during the reign of the Safavids, Qom gradually developed.
By 1503, Qom became one of the important centers of Shiite theology and became a vital pilgrimage site and religious pivot.
During the Afghan invasion, Qom suffered heavy damage and its inhabitants witnessed severe economic hardships.
Qom further sustained damage during the reign of Nader Shah and the conflicts between the two households of Zandieh and Qajar to gain power in Iran.
In 1798, Qom came under the control of Aqa Mohammad Khan Qajar. Upon gaining victory over his enemies, Fath-Ali Shah made repairs to the sepulcher and Holy Shrine of Hazrat Massoumeh (SA), in fulfillment of his vow.
Qom thrived in the Qajar era. After Russian forces entered Karaj in 1915, many of the inhabitants of Tehran moved to Qom. The transfer of the capital from Tehran to Qom was discussed, but the British and Russians scuttled the plan by pressuring the monarch of the times, Ahmad Shah Qajar.
Coinciding with this period, the National Defense Committee was set up, and Qom turned into a political and military apex against the Russian and British colonial powers.
Qom was also the center from where Ayatollah Khomeini initiated his opposition to Pahlavi Dynasty.
Today, Qom is considered one of the focal centers of Shiites. Its theological center and Holy Shrine of Hazrat Massoumeh (SA) are prominent features of the provincial capital of Qom province.
Another religious site is outside the city of Qom called Jamkaran. Qom’s proximity to Tehran has given it an advantage as well.
Here are some famous mosques of Qom:
Fatimah (Khanom) Mosque
This mosque was constructed by a charitable donor, a highly respected woman whose tomb lies in a special chamber alongside the mosque.
It has a large water reservoir and beautiful carpets. The mosque also has a library used by the pupils of Hazrat Jafar ibn Mohammad (AS).
Imam Hassan Askari (AS) Mosque
Located on Astaneh Avenue, this mosque is the oldest one in the province.
At present, there is no sign of any remnant of the main structure that dates back to the 3rd century AH (after hegira). Its current construction is a renovation of the old one. It is known as Atiq Mosque or Jame’ Atiq Mosque.
This mosque is situated on the western side of Hazrat Massoumeh’s (AS) shrine. It was built by the efforts of Ayatollah Boroujerdi in 1954.
Due to its massive structure, this mosque was named A’zam (meaning grand). It has three porches and its domed nocturnal area is adorned with tilework. Balasar Mosque is next to the A’zam Mosque.
(source: Iran Daily)
The Great Wall of China is well known as the largest wall in Asia (or indeed the world). Less known is the Wall of Gorgan in northeastern Iran (specifically the plain of Gorgan) attributed to the Sassanian era (224-651 CE). The structure is yet another testament to Sassanian engineering capabilities.