One of the greatest achievements of the Sudano-Sahelian architectural style. The mosque is located, on the flood plain of the Bani River. The first mosque on the site was built around the 13th century, but the current structure dates from 1907. As well as being the center of the community of Djenné, it is one of the most famous landmarks in Africa.

The Great Mosque’s signature trio of minarets / Image source

The walls of the Great Mosque are made of sun-baked earth bricks, and sand and earth based mortar, and are coated with a plaster which gives the building its smooth, sculpted look. The walls of the building are decorated with bundles of rodier palm sticks, that project about 60 cm from the surface.

The mosque is built about 75 × 75 meters that is raised by 3 meters above the level of the marketplace. The platform prevents damage to the mosque when the Bani River floods. The main entrance is on the northern side of the building.

The prayer wall or qibla of the Great Mosque faces east towards Mecca and overlooks the city marketplace. The qibla is dominated by three large, box-like towers or minarets jutting out from the main wall. The central tower is around 16 meters in height.

Great Mosque of Djenne, original in ruins in 1893

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