The Climax of Ottoman Era
Suleymaniye Mosque is an important landmark for the city, built for the
most powerful of the Ottoman Sultans: Sultan Suleyman, the Magnificent,
known as Kanuni.
The Complex is located on one of the seven hills of Istanbul and dominates the Historic Peninsula over the Golden Horn.
is an important landmark for the city. Sultan Süleyman, the Magnificent
who put his mark on the whole 16th century, commissioned Sinan, the
Chief Architect for this gorgeous complex.
He was one of the
greatest and most powerful of Ottoman sultans. The complex was built at
the zenith of the Ottoman Empire. The construction took place between
1549 and 1558.
It is the second largest mosque complex in Istanbul, after the Fatih Mosque Complex.
Suleymaniye Mosque Complex is a must see in Istanbul!
Did you know?
The idea behind building this grand complex was to emphasize the
importance of science, education and knowledge and to emphasize the
glory of the Ottoman Empire.
This is not only a mosque, but a complex of buildings;
- a mosque with four minarets,
- four madrasahs (theological schools) and their preparation schools,
- Koran reading school,
- a primary school,
- a medical school,
- a hospital with an insane asylum in it,
- a public kitchen,
- a caravansarai,
- a market street,
- a public bath,
- several tombs.
The complex created its own
neighbourhood with its own hamam, kitchen, market etc… The elegant design and grandoise feeling of the complex reflects the power and the glory and of the Ottoman
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And some other facts,
- The dome is 27.5 meters in diameter and 47 above the floor.
- The decorations of Suleymaniye Mosque were made by the most gifted artisans of their times.
is a richly decorated mosque with Iznik tiles, carved Proconnesian
marble, exquisite woodwork with ivory and mother-of-pearl inlays and
inscriptions written by the best calligraphers.
tiles used in the Suleymaniye Mosque are the earliest examples of the
famous technique of Iznik tile producing, with deep blue and vibrant red
on a pure white ground.
- The tombs of Sultan
Süleyman, the Magnificent and his wife Hurrem Sultan (Roxelana) and the
tomb of Sinan, the Chief Architect are here.
Necessary info about Suleymaniye Mosque:
You can see it at the North-west of Grand Bazaar. Take the tram from the Sultanahmet, get off it at the
Beyazit stop and walk from there. Ask for directions,anyone will show
you the way.
Opening hours: Open all day long, until the last prayer time in the evening.
Entrance fee: None
Adress: Mimar Sinan Street, Süleymaniye
The area which the complex was built on is a sloppy hillside. Sinan,
the Chief Architect has placed the buildings at different levels through
a brilliant arrangement of terraces. He created a beautiful symmetrical
The general feeling when you enter the mosque is
being impressed by the grandeur. The interior is simply decorated, but
the total impression is breath-taking.
The proportions and the spaciosness are noteworthy. Mosque was adorned with stained-glass windows letting the sunshine in.
While you are there;
- There are amazing views from the courtyard, at the Golden Horn side of course…
is a nice restaurant that serves a special dish named “kuru fasulye” of
(dried beans dish) which is higly adored by Turkish people. It is righ
across the main gate of the Mosque. You will easily understand which
one, just by seeing the crowd in front of it.
is a nice and elegant restaurant named “Darüzziyafe”. It is one of the
few restaurants in Istanbul that serves Ottoman Cuisine dishes. It is a
good idea to taste its delicious meals while you are there. It is at the
North-west side of the mosque, in the building which was the “Kitchens”
in the Ottoman times.
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