This single domed mosque is locally considered to be contemporary
with Khan Jahan Ali style mosques of Khalifatabad, present date Bagerhat,
Bangladesh. Based on architectural style the date of construction can be estimated
to be mid-fifteenth century (K. Alamgir).
The Chunakhola Mosque is a single domed square type
sultanate mosque; that is, a square structure crowned with a single dome. The
mosque is situated at one kilometer north-west of famous Shaitgambud Mosque.
The mosque measures 45'5" x 45'0" square externally while
internally it has a square plan of 25'2" x 25'2". The structure is a
single chamber, roofed over by a hemispherical dome. The eastern façade has
three arched openings to the prayer hall, where northern and southern façades
have one arched opening each. The dome is internally carried on by four
intersecting arches springing from stone pillars and brick pilasters attached
to the side walls. There are three mihrabs, each aligned with the three
entrances at east and the central portion of the qibla wall is projected
westward from the ground to the roof. Stylistically this kind is known as Khan
Jahan Ali architecture, commonly found in and around south-western part of
The square structure is buttressed by four corner circular turrets.
These turrets end at the level of parapet walls and ribbed in typical Bengali Sultanate
fashion. The façades are capped by curvilinear cornices of pre-Mughal type. Exterior
façades are of plain brick texture with advanced frame arched opening with
terracotta jali designs. The central entrance is larger than the side ones
which are slightly narrower and dwarfish. There are three terracotta mihrabs in
the qibla wall; the central one is larger and the flanking ones narrower and
dwarfish similar to the front façade. All three mihrabs are flanked by small
pillars with terracotta at the base and at the capital (K. Alamgir).
The mosque was partly restored and repaired by the Department of Archaeology, Bangladesh, and is now a protected monument.
Asher, C. B. Inventory of Key Monuments. In The Islamic Heritage of Bengal, George Michell, editor. Paris: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), 1984.
Hasan, P. Sultans and Mosques: The Early Muslim Architecture of Bangladesh. London: I. B. Tauris, 2007.
Islam, I., and Noblea, A. Mosque Architecture in Bangladesh: The Archetype and Its Changing Morphology. Journal of Cultural Geography, 17(2), 5-25, 1998.