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Soltaniyeh Cupola - ZanjanSoltaniyeh is the brilliant capital of the Mongol kings at the beginning of the l4th century, 135 km. from Qazvin. Of its splendid past Soltaniyeh has preserved only a tradition of fine copper and steel-working and the large Mausoleum of Soltan Oljaitu Khodabandeh. This imposing tomb was originally intended as the burial place of the first Shiite imams and was completed in 1307. It dominates the entire surrounding plateau and testifies to the amazing skill of the Mongol architects of the period. It subsequently served as a model for mausoleums throughout the country.

It is octagonal on the outside and surmounted by a very elegant and daring cupola, ogival in shape, which attains a height of 52 m., without buttresses, from an untrammeled base. The emphasis on the upward thrust was further heightened by four slender minarets of which only the first cylindrical courses remain. Higher still, there is a frieze composed of a long Kufic inscription and a row of stalactites. At the base of the dome is a strip of strap work surmounted by large triangles pointing upwards.

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