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The Abbasies’ House

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Having been awarded the prize for architectural excellence, the Abbasies’ House is considered among the most remarkable houses in Iran

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Published On : monday 14 March 2017

Having been awarded the prize for architectural excellence, the Abbasies’ House is
considered among the most remarkable houses in Iran. The construction of this historical house was begun in 1823 by Seyyed Ebrahim Tajer Kashani the grandfather of Ayatollah Seyyed Mohamad Alavi Boroujerdi, who was known as Seyyed Bagh, and was completed after 20 years. Unique architecture and decorations gave this house such a value that, around a century ago, the Abbasies’s family, who were crystalware merchants, purchased this house at a remarkably high price. Some notable features of the house are as follows: 5 sunken courtyards, paintings and plasterwork decorations, decorative elements of the Islamic architecture including geometric-patterned vaulting techniques such as honeycomb strap-work.

Technically, a sunken courtyard refers to a below-ground construction, i.e. a deep yard which provided advantages such as easy access to the subterranean water, cold and heat insulation, strength of construction and making bricks form the excavated excess soil.

The Abbasies’ House enjoys a symmetrical architecture, i.e. if a hypothetical line splits half each side of the building, both halves are perfectly symmetrical. To conform to the climatic conditions of Kashan, the house has summer and winter sections which have been used proportional to the weather conditions of each season. Unlike today’s modern buildings which display ostentatious exterior decorations, historical houses pay less attention to the appearance of the building while the interior parts are really impressive and highly ornate. “The architecture of the veil” is an outstanding feature of the Abbasies’ house, i.e. the interior is tightly concealed from the public view.

Built On approximately 5000 m² of land and with a gross living area of 6500 m², this house has 5 communal outer areas, a private inner area, a garden, the servants’ quarters and a summer room. The outer section of the house was used as the guest area in which the business guests were hosted. This section has a mirror room, an indoor hall, an Iwan (a terrace), a prayer room, a burrow as well as three-door and five-door rooms.

The private inner section is dedicated to the owner and his family’s residence. In Islamic architecture, this area is a specific territory which is completely isolated from the outer section. The garden area has been the place for performing congregational prayers led by Ayatollah Seyyed Mohamad Alavi Boroujerdi; that is why he was nicknamed Seyyed Bagh which means the lord of the garden. The summer area has been devoted to theology teaching sessions.

The last part to mention is the servants’ quarters where the servants of the house lived. This section is connected to the central area through the kitchen.

This mansion has totally two wind towers and two wells, one of which has been the water source of the house. The mirror room, the throne room, the five-door room or the great hall as well as two indoor halls are the main parts of this house. The construction of this 4-story house only with the local materials has doubled its value. It is also noteworthy that a number of movies and TV shows have been produced in this mansion.