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The principal building materials used in Afghanistan are mud brick and pise, baked brick and stone; wood is fairly rare. The majority of pre-modern buildings in Afghanistan are built of mud brick or pise and have not survived well the ravages of time. More important buildings are made of baked brick which is often decorated with stucco, painted frescos, tiles or relief brick patterns. There is no tradition of ashlar masonry, and stonework usually consists of rubble masonry foundations for mud-brick structures. Exceptions to this usually represent outside influence such as the mosque of Larwand which is Indian in its design and execution. The oldest identifiable Islamic building in Afghanistan is the ninth-century Abbasid mosque at Balkh. This is a square nine-domed structure with arches resting on four central piers. The north, west and south sides are solid walls whilst the east side opposite the mihrab is an open arcade resting on two round piers. The distinctive feature of the mosque is its stucco decoration which resembles that of Samarra and demonstrates the long distance transmission of ideas and motifs during this period. A more unusual form is the eleventh-century mosque/madrassa at Lashkari Bazar near the modern town of Bust. This is a square mud-brick and pise structure with external buttress towers and a central courtyard. On the west side of the courtyard there is a small iwan containing a mihrab. The orientation of the building is aligned with the qibla (unlike other buildings on the site) suggesting that it served a religious function, possibly a madrassa. Further east at Ghazni is the palace mosque of Masud III; this is a rectangular structure with a roof supported on six pillars and three doors on the west side. The mihrab is made from marble panels carved with Quranic calligraphy and stylized vegetation. Afghanistan Building Picture offers a vast collection of photographs of Building, Download high resolution of photos for free.

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