Kashan is one of the oldest cities in Iran. The history of this city at least refers to 7000 years ago. There are lots of historic places in Kashan. One of them is the old congregational mosque of Kashan which is the oldest monument in the city. In fact it is controversy when exactly it was built or what it was at first.
The congregational mosque of Kashan was built during Seljuq era, about 800 years ago. It is possible that it was a fire temple during pre-Islamic time which was converted to mosque after the invasion of Arabs. Some historians believe that Safieh Khatoon, the daughter of Malek-e Ashtar, the commander of Islamic army, ordered to build this mosque. Archeologists have found that it was built during the first stages of Islamic period. In addition the mosque was destroyed due to an earthquake, about 250 years ago, and repaired by the local governor of Kashan, Abdul Razaq Khan, in 10 years. This mosque is the oldest monument in Kashan and its minaret is the oldest structure in Isfahan province.
A brick-dome, a minaret, two praying halls, a portico, an underground praying hall and a pool are different parts of this mosque. Actually, the minaret is the oldest inscribed structure in Isfahan and the third antique minaret in Iran. It is a double-shelf structure with an inscription at the bottom which says it was built in 466 AH, about 1000 years ago. Surprisingly, In the praying hall there are two niches or Mihrab. People think it is related to the change of Qibla, first it was Quds or Jerusalem then changed to Mecca, but according to archeologists it changed because the first one, to the right, was in the wrong direction. On the first Mihrab there are remains of stucco works and inscriptions of verses of Koran which are about Friday prayer. That’s why this mosque is known as the congregational or Friday mosque of Kashan. To the north, there is an underground praying hall which was used during summer. There, archeologists found remains of a furnace, referring to the first stages of the Islamic period about 1000 years ago during Buyid dynasty.
The congregational mosque of Kashan was built during seljuq era, however some historians believe that it dates back to the first stages of Islamic period. An earthquake caused some destructions, about 250 years ago, but it was maintained by the local governor. This mosque has been a national heritage of Iran since 1937.