The Geometric Studies of Some Mosaic Design Compositions and Puzzles Presented in a Historical Treatise

Reza Sarhangi
Proceedings of Bridges 2015: Mathematics, Music, Art, Architecture, Culture (2015)
Pages 27–36 Regular Papers


Interlocks of Similar or Complementary Figures is the only treatise about girih construction that has survived for many centuries. It is believed that the document was written sometime between the 13th and 15th centuries by an anonymous mathematician/craftsman. This is the only document remaining from the medieval Persian that demonstrates how a girih can be constructed using compass and straightedge. The treatise includes some puzzles for polygon transformations. This article includes the study of many puzzles and girihs that have been documented in the treatise. All images, except for photographs from the treatise, have been created by the author using the Geometer's Sketchpad (GSP) software program.