Masjidbari Mosque

Masjidbari Mosque situated on the river Aila in Masjidbari village under Mirzaganj upazila of Patuakhali district. According to an inscription one Khan Muazzam Aziyal Khan built this mosque in 876 AH (1471-1472 AD) during the reign of Sultan ruknuddin barbak shah. The mosque was left unused for a long time being thickly covered by a heavy jungle. It was discovered in 1860 when a survey was going on in this southern part of Bangladesh. Now it is preserved as a historical monument under the department of Archaeology of Bangladesh.

The brick built building has two main parts - the main hall and the verandah. The main square hall measures 6.5m internally and the walls are about 2m thick. There were six octagonal towers in all, four in the corners of the mosque and two at the two sides of the verandah. But these are now destroyed. The mosque, with a straight cornice, has three archways in the eastern wall and one each at the northern and southern walls. The central archway at the eastern side is bigger than the flanking ones and corresponding to the archways there are three mihrabs at the western wall.

Like the central archway the central mihrab is bigger than the side ones and is slightly projected outwards. A dome covers the main prayer hall.

There is a rectangular verandah measuring 6.5m ' 2.5m (internally) at the eastern side of the mosque. It is accessible through five archways under five rectangular structures, three at the eastern and one each at the northern and southern sides. The central archway in the verandah is also bigger than the flanking ones. The roof over the verandah is flat. The architecture reflects the Khan Jahani style of Bagerhat. Being kept unused for a long time, various parts of the mosque were damaged. Evidence of terracotta plaques in the mosque can easily be guessed. But all is gone now with the flow of time. [Iftekhar Uddin Bhuiyan]