An architectural beauty which resembles hollow upper half of a sphere is known as a dome. It was ancient Romans who bought the architectural capabilities of the dome into the light. After that, many civilizations adopted the use of domes while building monuments, temples, mosques, palaces etc. Dome is known to enhance the beauty of any building. Domes were modified and built using various materials. A lot of the world’s famous building has beautified using domes. Let us quickly find out the top 10 famous domes of the world.
Famous Domes Of The World
1. Great Stupa, Sanchi, India
Sanchi Stupa is a Buddhist complex, mainly known for its Great Stupa, resides on a hilltop at Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh, India. It is located near Bhopal, the capital city of Madhya Pradesh. The Great Stupa is one of the oldest buildings of primaeval stone construction in India. It holds significant importance in Indian Architecture. It was originally built by King Ashoka in the 3rd century BC. Its blueprint was a plain hemispherical stone structure built over the relics of the Buddha.
To honour and show gratitude towards the relics of Buddha, it was decorated with chatra, which indicates a high rank. The Stupa was built in Sanchi as Sachi was his wife’s birthplace as well as the venue of her and Ashoka’s wedding. The Stupa was modified in the 1st century BC. The sanctuary has a plethora of monolithic pillars, palaces, temples and monasteries in different states of preservation. It was inscribed as a by UNESCO recognised it as a World Heritage site on January 24, 1989, for its exclusive cultural value.
2. Dome of the Rock, Jerusalem, Israel
The dome of the Rock is one of the most iconic buildings in the world. Showing up in travel posters everywhere as an integral part of Jerusalem skyline, it’s one of the most sacred sites in the world for Muslims today. Believed to be the sight of Prophet Muhammad’s night journey and ascension, a story briefly told in which Prophet Muhammad miraculously travels from Mecca to Jerusalem overnight before ascending into heaven to meet the Prophet’s god.
The building is also a source of controversy as it stands on the same spot as the first and second Jewish temples, the holy site for Jews and a site of wide importance to the religious history. Dome of the Rock is one of the oldest and familiar architectural examples of Islamic culture. Usually mistaken as a mosque, it is actually a shrine which intends to protect a sacred rock beneath its ceiling.
3. Florence Cathedral, Italy
The main structure of the Florence Gothic Cathedral in Europe is medieval. It’s remarkable dome and much of the art decorating its facade defines the first century of the Renaissance. The Duomo, the dine for the cathedral is huge, the largest anywhere when built is the 15th century and still in the Top 20. The church is claimed to fame is its dome, the first of the Renaissance and the first great dome built in Europe in over a thousand years. The church was built in Gothic times.
Today, it rewards those who climb to top with a glorious France view. While the Duomo’s architecture is impressive, the Baptistery across the cathedral is centuries older. The Baptistery is separate because in medieval times you couldn’t enter the church until you’re baptized. The Baptistery features Ghiberti’s magnificent bronze doors which are called as “gates of paradise”. These creations help to define the Renaissance when Florence blossomed and the classic arts were reborn. This church present in Florence, Italy has been declared as the world heritage site and attracts a lot of tourists.
4. Hagia Sophia, Istanbul
Hagia Sophia (or Ayasofya in Turkish), a grandiose illustration of surviving Byzantine architecture, is situated in the Old City in Istanbul, Turkey. The present Hagia Sophia is centuries old and has served as an Eastern Orthodox Cathedral, a Roman Catholic Cathedral and an Imperial Mosque before being converted into a museum in 1935. The interior is magnificent and breathtaking. It is very astounding to see both Christian and Islamic elements in the same place. It is also amazing to see how well-preserved the architecture and mosaics are, after so many centuries. It is one of the most visited tourist attraction in Istanbul and one of the famous churches in the world.
5. Saint Basil’s Cathedral, Moscow, Russia
To some it looks like a house made of sweets, to others it’s a fairytale palace but what’s beyond doubt is the fact that St. Basil’s Cathedral is one of the most historic and fascinating attractions of the Russian capital. Saint Basil’s Cathedral is a church in Red Square, Moscow, Russia. The building, now a museum, is officially known as the Cathedral of the Intercession of the holiest theotokos on the moat. It was built between 1555-61 on orders from Ivan the Terrible and commemorates the capture of Kazan and Astrakhan. This famous landmark was city’s tallest building until the completion of Ivan the great bell tower in 1600.
6. St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome, Italy
St. Peter’s Basilica is located in Vatican City, Rome, Italy. Its dome dominates the skyline of Rome. The basilica is cross-shaped. The central space is beautified by one of the enormous domes across the globe. Holy Door, which only opens during jubieles, is one of the decorated bronze doors which leads from the narthex.
As compared with other churches, this one has vast interiors. As per historical facts, initially, Peter’s grave was denoted with a red rock which symbolized his name. Some years later, a shrine was constructed at this venue Almost three hundred years later, St. Peter’s Basilica was constructed over this site.
7. Taj Mahal, India
The Taj Mahal is the most beautiful monument built by the Mughals and is undoubtedly the pride of India. It is entirely built of white marbles. This stunning architectural beauty is beyond any description, particularly at dawn and sunset. Taj Mahal was built by Muslim emperor Shah Jahan in the memory of his beloved wife at Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India. It has one of the most popular and famous domes in the world.
The Taj Mahal, meaning crown palace, has the grave of queen Mumtaz Mahal at the lower chamber. It was built over a period of 22 years implying 20,000 workers. The skilled craftsmen from all over India were called for dedicated tasks which enhanced the beauty of the Taj Mahal. Taj Mahal is a result of the fusion of Indian, Mughal, Turkish, Islamic, Persian and Ottoman architectural styles. The place is one of the best tourist places in India.
8. St. Paul’s Cathedral, London
St Paul’s Cathedral, London, is an Anglican cathedral. It is located on the peak point of London i.e. Ludgate hill. It is listed as a Grade I building. This cathedral was built in remembrance of Paul, the Apostle in AD 604. Later it was rebuilt in the late 17th century as Great Fire of London destroyed it. It is designed in the English Baroque style. It is the second-largest dome in the world. It is one of the most famous domes in the world.
Also Read: Top 10 Tourist Attractions in London
9. United States Capitol, United States
Situated in Washington D.C., the U.S. Capitol is one of the most architecturally impressive and historically significant buildings around the globe. It has housed the meeting chambers of the Senate and the House of Representatives for almost two centuries. Since the laying of the cornerstone in 1793, the U.S. Capitol has been built, burnt, rebuilt, extended and restored. This building has significant importance for American people and their government.
Also Read: 10 Most Beautiful Parliament Buildings
10. Eden Project, Bodelva, England
One of the most famous domes in the world built on the site of a disused china clay pit, the Eden Project includes two biomes, planted landscapes, including vegetable gardens, and sculptures that include a giant bee and towering robot called RSA WEEE which were created from old electrical appliances. It includes the world’s largest greenhouse and inside the artificial biomes are plants that are collected from all around the world.
It is located just 2 kilometres (1.25 miles) from the town of St Blazey and 5 kilometres (3 miles) from the larger town of St Austell, Cornwall. The complex is dominated by two enclosures consisting of adjoining domes that house plant species from around the world. Each enclosure emulates a natural biome. The first dome emulates a tropical environment and the second a Mediterranean environment.
Image Source: Wikimedia
These are the 10 most famous domes of the world. Kindly share and do post your comments.