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Islamic architecture encompasses a wide range of both secular and religious styles from the early history of Islam to the present day. What today is known as Islamic architecture was influenced by Roman, Byzantine, Persian and all other lands which the Muslims conquered in the 7th and 8th centuries. Further east, it was also influenced by Chinese and Indian architecture as Islam spread to Southeast Asia. It developed distinct characteristics in the form of buildings, and the decoration of surfaces with Islamic calligraphy and geometric and interlace patterned ornament. The principal Islamic architectural types for large or public buildings are: the Mosque, the Tomb, the Palace and the Fort. From these four types, the vocabulary of Islamic architecture is derived and used for other buildings such as public baths, fountains and domestic architecture.
Many of the buildings which are mentioned in this article are listed as World Heritage Sites. Some of them, like the Citadel of Aleppo, have suffered significant damage in the ongoing Syrian Civil War.