Mausoleum of Aisha Bibi

Mausoleum Aisha-Bibi. A Silk Way Kazakhstan.The Aisha-Bibi mausoleum, dating from the 11th-12th centuries, has come down to us with significant losses. Upon closer examination of the remains of the monument, we are convinced that it was one of the outstanding works of Central Asian architecture, and it is no coincidence that many researchers focus their attention on its architecture.

The composition of the Aisha-Bibi mausoleum is centric, portalless, the architectural interpretation of all facades of the mausoleum is identical; along the axes of the facades – openings covered with pointed arches of wedge-shaped masonry, which are “supported” by three-quarter columns; at the level of the heels of the arches – horizontal impost; above the arched openings – a rectangular framing of the tympanum.

All this shows a significant similarity with the Samanid mausoleum (IX century). But there are also significant differences: if in the Samanid mausoleum massive columns at the corners of the building are built into the body of the wall, then in the Aisha-Bibi mausoleum they protrude and have a profile (columns) thinning upwards with entasis characteristic of ancient Central Asian wooden columns, an elongated capital with widening up, the transition of the trunk to the capital, marked with a roller.

If the building in the Samanid mausoleum was faced with building bricks, the diverse combination of which achieved an exceptional beauty brick texture, then the facing of the Aisha-Bibi mausoleum was stamped and partially carved terracotta.

In the mausoleum of Aisha-Bibi, two arches with different outlines of curves have been preserved. In the first case, there is an arch with two real and two imaginary centers.

The second arch is four-centered with small radii equal to the span of the arch and large radii in the span of the arch.

The study of the proportions of the Aisha-Bibi mausoleum allows us to assert that, along with the use of gyaz as a measure of length, the architects successfully used the method of sequential halving of the side and diagonal of a square or span of an arch, as was the case during the construction of the Samanids mausoleum.

This technique of constructing forms can be traced in the proportions of the elements and architectural divisions of the structure from large to smallest values, including the modulation of ceramic cladding. The characteristic dimensions of the elements of the Aisha-Bibi mausoleum fit into a geometric progression.

The architect of the mausoleum Aisha-Bibi was obviously an outstanding master of his time. Knowing the building practice that had developed by that time in Central Asia, he introduced new techniques and solutions, which allowed him to create a unique architectural image.