The Kilic Ali Pasha Complex (Turkish: Kilic Ali Pasa Kulliyesi) is a group of buildings designed and built between 1580 and 1587 by Mimar Sinan, who at the time was in his 90s. The mosque itself was constructed in 1578-1580.
It is located in the Tophane neighbourhood of the Beyoglu district of Istanbul and is named after Kilic Ali Pasha.
It consists of a mosque, a medrese, a hamam, a turbe, and a fountain. Originally, it had been on the coastline, but since the sea in front of it has been filled again, it is now surrounded by other buildings. The complex was built on the orders of the Kapudan-i Derya (Grand Admiral) Kilic Ali Pasha.
When the Pasha was told to build the complex on the sea for being the Chief Captain, he had the mosque built on the land reclaimed from the sea. The mosque of the complex is evaluated as a smaller version of Hagia Sophia.
The central dome of the mosque is 12.70 metres (41.7 ft) in diameter, carried on pendentives on granite piers and two half-domes on the Qibla axis. Towards the entrance, on two sides, there is a two-story gallery. The dome is placed at the center with two exedrae similar to a Byzantine basilica, thus the resemblance to Hagia Sophia.
Above the prayer hall are five small domes carried on six marble columns. The tile panels placed high in the prayer hall are inscribed with ayats (verses) from the Quran. The mosque has only one minaret with one gallery. There are 247 windows including the 24 of the central dome. The mihrab is in a square projecting apse.
Although Kiliç Ali Pasha mosque was initially designed along the same lines as Hagia Sophia, the fact that it was all constructed as one structure, and that it was intended as a mosque, imply that the interior is much more harmonious and cohesive than Hagia Sophia. The series of smaller domes that surround the main one are supported by marble columns, and the smooth luxury of the materials used in construction are complemented by the thickly piled carpets and the large but somewhat modest chandeliers. Decoration is completed with a number of panels that are inscribed with Quranic verses.
The Kiliç Ali Pasha Complex is based around a mosque, but also contains a medrese (religious school), türbe (mausoleum) and the fountain across the street. It was constructed in the latter half of the 16th century, more than one hundred years after the Ottoman conquest, and was designed by the famous Mimar Sinan. The Mosque of the complex is said to be a smaller version of Hagia Sophia, and indeed it shows the cascading domes that characterize it and can also be seen on the Beyzayit Mosque by the Grand Bazaar. There is a marble fountain, intended for ghusl or ritual washing, as well as the patron’s tomb (the octagonal structure), the square medrese and a hammam. The doors of the complex and of the mosque are all highly ornate, to the point that the doors to the tomb of Kiliç Ali Pasha are actually inlaid with mother of pearl. As Kiliç Ali Pasha was named the Chief Captain of the Ottoman Navy, this complex was initially built on the coast line, on reclaimed land. More land has since been reclaimed, and as such it is no longer on the water’s edge.
The Tophane Fountain, across from Kiliç Ali Pasha Complex, is a typical large-scale public fountain from the Ottoman period. Public fountains were an important component of public infrastructure, and the provision of a fountain, known as a sebil, was underwritten by Islamic tradition. Unlike the Sultan Ahmed III fountain by Hagia Sophia, this particular structure was constructed in the late 16th century, along with the neighbouring Complex, and is thus not exemplary of a synthesis of Ottoman/Islamic and Western styles. Its walls are ornately engraved with mihrab-esque false porticoes and Qur’anic verses. Towards the top of the structure, which is actually wider than the base, we find vegetal designs as well, culminating in a small rail around the top.
Being part od a complex that includes a school, Tophane fountain, a tomb and a hamman, tradition says that this mosque was built in a space recovered from the sea by the most famous Ottoman architect, Sinan, in 1581, by request of admiral Kiliç Ali Pasha, who occupies the tomb.
The Kilic Ali Pasha Complex is a group of buildings designed by Mimar Sinan and built between 1580 and 1587.
It is located in the Tophane district of Istanbul, Turkey. It is named after Kýlýç Ali Paþa.
It consists of a mosque, a medrese, a hamam, a türbe, and a sebil. Originally, it had been on the coastline, but since the sea in front of it has been filled, it is now surrounded by other buildings. The mosque of the complex has been famous for its resemblance to Hagia Sophia since its construction.
Who is KILIC ALI or ULUC ALI ?
Uluj Ali (Turkish: Uluç Ali Reis, later Uluç Ali Paþa and finally Kýlýç Ali Paþa; original Italian name Giovanni Dionigi Galeni) was an Italian-born Muslim corsair, who later became an Ottoman admiral and Chief Admiral (Kaptan-ý Derya) of the Ottoman Fleet in the 16th century.
He was also known by several other names in the Christian countries of the Mediterranean, and in the literature also appears under various names. He was often, especially in Italy, referred to as Occhiali, and Miguel de Cervantes called him Uchali in chapter XXXIX of his Don Quixote de la Mancha. Elsewhere he was simply called Ali Pasha. John Wolf, in his The Barbary Coast, refers to him as Euldj Ali.
Ali was born in 1519 as Giovanni Dionigi Galeni, the son of seaman Birno Galeni and his wife Pippa de Cicco, in the village of La Castella in Calabria, Italy. His father wanted him to receive a religious education, but on 29 April 1536, Giovanni was captured by Ali Ahmed, one of the corsair captains of Barbarossa Hayreddin Pasha, and was forced to serve as a galley slave. After several years, he converted to Islam and joined the corsairs. This was by no means unusual; many Muslim corsairs in this period were converts from Christian lands
There were many mosques in Istanbul. It was a prestigious thing to have a mosque with the name of someone’s own in Ottoman Empire. All the important ones were built by the financial support of wealthy people in history.
Kilic Ali Pasa was a famous captain. Actually he was an Italian child when he was captured by Barbaros Hayreddin Pasa. He was intelligent and successful so he gained a rank in Ottoman navy. His name which had been Uluc Ali Reis was changed into Kilic Ali Pasa. He wanted to have a mosque named after him and he requested from Mimar Sinan to build it. Also he requested a place for his mosque from Sultan. But he was answered as “Your place is the sea, what will you do in the land?” So, he made the sea filled, and gained the piece of land to build his mosque.
Strange thing, this mosque is a scaled model of Hagia Sophia. Actually it is a “kulliye” with side buildings, like hammam and school. As being the architect who strengthened it, Sinan had honored the original Hagia Sophia with this mosque.
Here is the second legend about this mosque: Kilic Ali Pasa had been in many sea wars and captured many people from various countries. Some of these captives worked during the construction of the mosque. It is said that one of them was the great Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra.
The Kiliç Ali Pasha Mosque is a striking structure located in Tophane. The outside of the mosque is rather dark in color, with gold spires topping it's single dome, as well as it's lone minaret. The interior is quite stunning, a very unique look among mosques in Istanbul. The lovely artwork and calligraphy adorning the walls & ceilings, the colored stained-glass windows, the golden chandeliers hanging from above, and the green carpeting all give this mosque a distinctive and beautiful appearance. Built in 1586, and designed by the great Turkish architect Sinan, it was constructed to honor Kiliç Ali Pasha, a famous Ottoman admiral during the 1600's. Although born a Christian in the southern Italian town of Calabria, Kiliç was captured during a raid, converted to Islam, and eventually became one of the greatest naval heroes in Turkish history. His gravesite is also located on the grounds of the mosque.