Historical Mosques in Singapore

Though young in its modern history, Singapore does have buildings which are over a century old. Many of such buildings still standing today www.anugerahkubah.com are places of worship. There are many mosques in Singapore, which almost all are well attended by devoted Muslims who make way to the mosques for their worshipping.

Amongst them, Jamae Mosques is possibly one of the oldest around. It is located within the central area of Singapore, and was established in 1826. This mosque is also known as Chulia Mosque, Maideen Mosque and the Big Mosque amongst the Tamil Muslim community in Singapore. Together with its neighbour, the Sri Marimman Temple, the mosque stands out in its predominantly Chinese location, the Chinatown. Its presence may well have strong influence for the name of the street that runs beside it — Mosque Street. Prior to the 1830s, the site where the mosque now stands had a makam, or Malay for grave, tomb or shrine, of a local religious leader, Muhammad Salih Valinvah. It was believed the present mosque was completed between 1830 and 1835, was built by the Tamil Muslim Chulias. It was designated a national monument in 1974. Today visitors from all over the world visit the mosque, which exhibits the influences of both the East and the West.

Another historical mosque would be the Abdul Gafoor Mosque, which stands on the site of the Al Abrar mosque who settled in the vicinity of Dunlop Street back in the 1850’s. The original Al Abrar was a wooden structure, put up in 1989. The founder of the mosque, Shaik Abdul Gafoor Shaik Hyder, a South Indian lawyer’s clerk, felt that there was a need to replace the old dilapidated mosque and thus build in 1907 and was renovated just recently. It is a splendid sight to behold with its beautiful dome and minarets, and in keeping with Islamic guidelines, it was build on a invisible axis with Mecca, Islam’s holy city as the hub. This mosque surprisingly has a western touch, the stained glass windows. The effect of sunlight streaming through the stained glass windows can be spectacular. The mosque was declared a National Monument in 1979.

Another premier historical mosque in Singapore is the Sultan Mosque, or Masjid Sultan’s. It is a prominent landmark in the Kampong Glam Malay Heritage District. The mosque has a long history, dating as far back as 1842. It was named after Sultan Hussein, who was installed as the Sultan of Singapore by Sir Stamford Raffles. It was that area the Sultan had his official residence and asked that a mosque be built near his palace. The mosque has passed through many developments to be what it is today, and is now the showcase for locals and tourists alike to learn, understanding the religion, culture and the diverse ethnic groups that make up Muslims in Singapore today. The huge prayer hall can accommodate up to five thousand people in a mass prayer. The building was declared a preserved historical building and is now part of Singapore’s proud heritage.

 

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