M. Anwarul Islam is a retired engineer, architect and academic with some publications emanating from his personal research. He is one of the first five architects qualified in Bangladesh (BArch/1966) who also obtained BSc. Eng. (1957) and MSc. (1974) degrees from the Bangladesh University Engineering and Technology. Having worked in engineering design and architecture for eighteen years he left for England where he was awarded the degree of PhD by the University of Warwick in 1978. He then began a teaching career that continued until he retired from the Manchester School of Architecture in 2006. This included supervision of the research work of a number of PhD students of the University of Manchester and the Manchester Metropolitan University in various aspects of Islamic Architecture. Although Dr. Islam’s early publications are in the field of structural design, all his recent works involve the influence of religious beliefs and practices on the architectural design of buildings in the Muslim world. The last one entitled The Dome of the Rock -Origin of its Octagonal Plan, was published in The Palestine Exploration Quarterly in 2007. The present book of the author is the outcome of his latest research in a field other than engineering or architecture.