Historical Sites In the Holy City of Mashhad
Qadamgah lies 23 kms northeast of Neyshabur and is a regular spot on the itinerary of pilgrims visiting the holy city of Mashhad. According to the accounts of the journey, Imam Reza (A.S.) stopped at a spring, besides which he performed the prayer. After the prayer, the impression of his feet miraculously appeared on the stone where he stood. Later, the faithful built a dome besides the spring and installed the impression of the Imam’s feet in its southern wall. The present building dates from the Safavid period.
A similar impression of the Imam’s feet is preserved in the shrine of Imamzada Muhammad Mahrouq in Nishabur, which seems to suggest that a miracle also took place while Imam Reza (A.S.) passed through that city
2. Ferdowsi’s Tomb:
Abul Qasim Ferdowsi, the greatest epic poet in the world history who composed the famous Shahnameh in thirty years expired in 411 A.H./ 1020 A.D.
His tomb is located 22 kilometres north-west of the holy city of Mashhad along the side of Quchan highway. There is a museum in the western part of the tomb.
This building is located close to Ferdowsi’s tomb. The tomb of Imam Abu Hamid Muhammad Ghazzali (1059-1111A.D.), is located somewhere in Toos, and thus the exact place is unknown, so a gravestone had been erected for his reminiscence near the building.
4. Nadir Shah Afshar’s Tomb:
It is located in a beautiful garden in the heart of the holy city of Mashhad. Nadir Shah Afshar’s statue riding a horse and holding an axe in hand can be seen on the top of the tomb. There is a museum inside the tomb containing about 130 weapons, helmets and armours.
Nadir Shah Afshar (born. 1688 A.D.) ascended the throne in 1148 A.H./ 1735 A.D., with his capital at Mashhad. He was killed in 1160 A.H./1747 A.D., in Quchan, in the Khorasan province.
5. Mosalla of Mashhad:
The Mosalla (the Prayers Courtyard) is located in Payeen Khiaban having a high Ivan (balcony) and two porticos on both the sides. According to the extant inscription it was built in 1087 A.H./ 1676 A.D., during Shah Sulayman Safavi’s reign. It facade is made of bricks and has been decorated with inscriptions and glazed tiles.
6. The 72 People Mosque:
This historical mosque is located in the Great Bazaar of the holy city of Mashhad. It consists of an Ivan, two minarets and an inscription and was constructed in 855 A.H./ 1451 A.D.
7. Abbas-Quli Khan Madrasa:
This historical Madrasa is located at the beginning of Nawab Safavi Avenue, Its founder was Abbas Quli Khan Biglar Bigie and its construction dates back to 1077 A.H./ 1666 A.D.
8. Akhanjan Tower:
It is located at a point 22 kilometres away from Mashhad. The facade of the tower is covered with octagonal bricks and has a conic dome.
The Grave of Imam al-Ghazali in Tus, Khurasan
Near the newly constructed boulevard in the ancient city of Tus you can observe a huge square shaped historical monument made out of bricks. Its height is 25 meters and covers an area of 144 square meters and consists of three chambers. The middle chamber consists of mihrab which is decorated with intricate stucco work.
This building according to the popular belief is called as Haruniyah, the jail built by the Abbasid caliph Harun al-Rashid (rule 170-193 A.H/ 786-809 A.D.) but it in the ancient travelogues it is named as Masjid-i Tus.
But according to the recent researches it have been established that this building was only a Khanqah built near a Masjid and constructed in the seventh or eighth century Hijrah. American missionary Donaldson in the year 1917 CE had observed that this building was only Khanqah belonging to Imam Abu Hamid Muhammad al-Ghazali (450-505 A.H./ 1059-1111 CE) .But this building is not at all related to Imam al-Ghazali. But the historical accounts and chronicles and the famous world travelers who had paid visit to the grave of Imam al-Ghazali had recorded its location outside the precincts of the historical Tus (Taberan) city.
The author of Mihman Namah-i Bukhara compiled in 915 A.H., have described the grave of Imam al-Ghazali in detail. He has mentioned that the grave of Imam al-Ghazali was very small and was located near the western rampart of Tus city.
In the year 1995 the Archaeological Survey of Khorasan province carried out excavations in this area and discovered the remains of the grave of Imam al-Ghazali which corresponds exactly with the description as mentioned in Mihman Namah-i Bukhara in the year 915.
Haruniyah was renovated recently and a grave with epitaph ascribed to Imam al-Ghazali is located on the entrance of the monument. The grave of Husayn Khedive Jam, the renowned scholar on the life and works of Imam al-Ghazali is also located near this grave.