The single-domed tomb is locally considered to be
contemporary with Khawja Shahbaz Mosque which was was built in 1679 AD. Khwaja
Shahbaz, a prominent merchant of Dhaka during the viceroyalty of prince Muhammad
Azam. Presently it is located near Curzon hall and Teen Netar Mazar (tomb of three
The Khawja Shahbaz Complex is positioned near Mir Jumla’s Gate
(Dhaka Gate), one of the oldest Mughal architectures of Dhaka, signifying the
prominence of the place. The tomb is located at the east of the mosque
courtyard and is an integral part of the mosque complex, follows the same
architectural style. However, there is a verandah on the south of the main tomb
chamber is covered with a beautiful do-chala hut-shaped roof. The Khawja
Shahbaz Tomb is an advanced Bengali single-domed Mughal type tomb.
The tomb has an oblong plan of 40'10" x 30'2" externally
and 32'0" x 19'4" internally. The structure has a single sarcophagus chamber
with a verandah. The chamber is roofed over by a hemispherical dome supported
by squinches at four corners. The northern, eastern and western façades have
single arched opening to the central hall. The southern verandah has a central
opening at south with two smaller openings at east and west.
The square sarcophagus chamber is buttressed by four corner octagonal
turrets, capped by plastered cupolas. These turrets rise slightly above the
parapet walls and ribbed in typical Bengali fashion. Parapets are straight
instead of the curvilinear cornice of pre-Mughal types. The northern, eastern
and western façades of the sarcophagus chamber have arched entrances emphasized
by a frame of slender, engaged columns and a raised cornice. All façades have a
series of arched recessed niches. The arches of the verandah openings are cusped
and issued from beautifully tapering pilasters.
The mosque was restored and repaired by the Department of Archaeology, Bangladesh and it 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.