1. Place of prostration
There are over 2.5 million Muslims in the UK and over 1,500 mosques. The mosque is a place to gather for prayers, to study and to celebrate festivals such as Ramadan. It can also be used to house schools and community centres.
The Arabic word for mosque, “masjid”, means “place of prostration”. The first mosque was the Prophet Muhammad's home in Medina, Saudi Arabia, a 7th-Century house with a large courtyard surrounded by long rooms.
The simplest mosque would be a prayer room with a wall marked with a “mihrab” – a niche indicating the direction of Mecca, which Muslims should face when praying. A typical mosque also includes a minaret, a dome and a place to wash before prayers. Each feature has its own significance.
2. CLICKABLE: The mosque revealed
Click on the image below to explore the different features of a mosque.
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3. Mosques from across the globe
Click below to find out more about some of Islam's most important mosques.