The Süleymaniye was ravaged by a fire in 1660 and the dome collapsed again during the earthquake of 1766. Subsequent repairs damaged what was left of the original decoration of Sinan. The mosque was restored again in the middle of the 19th century by the Swiss-Italian architect brothers Gaspare and Giuseppe Fossati. In a botched attempt to restore it to its supposed original glory, the dome and the semi-domes were painted in an Ottoman baroque style. During the recent cleaning the original design was faithfully restored.
During World War I the courtyard was used as a weapons depot and when some of then ammunition ignited the mosque suffered another fire. Not until 1956 was it fully restored again. Now it’s still in restoration. I visited a small hall which was open for attendees and didn’t see main interiors.
You can watch my 1 min 46 sec HQ Video Istanbul Suleymanyie Mosque slide show part III out of my Youtube channel with Allah Akbar pray.
The Süleymaniye Complex is composed of 15 sections. There are two tombs in the complex, one of them belonging to Suleiman the Magnificient, and the other one belonging to Hürrem Sultan (Roxelana, a Russian slave girl).
Just outside the mosque walls to the north is the tomb of architect Sinan.
You can watch my 2 min 00 sec HQ Video Istanbul Suleymanyie Mosque part II out of my Youtube channel with Allah Akbar pray.
It is the second largest mosque in the city, and one of the best-known sights of Istanbul. The Süleymaniye Mosque was built on the order of Sultan Suleiman I in 1557 by Architect Sinan (the grand old master of Ottoman architecture).
The main dome is 53 meters high and has a diameter of 26.5 meters. At the time it was built, the dome was the highest in the Ottoman Empire, when measured from its base, but still lower from the ground level and smaller in diameter than that of Hagia Sophia.
You can watch my 3 min 46 sec HQ Video Istanbul Suleymaniye Mosque part I out of my Youtube channel with Allah Akbar pray.
Just adjacent to the mosque itself is the resting place of Suleymaniye himself, a small tomb and many, MANY, graves surrounding it....if you cant' be near the great in your lifetime you can at least be buried NEAR THEM. Some of the grave markers were very ornate and beautifully sculpted. The script in Arabic is also looks very graceful and flowing. Yet many were simple, bordering on plain. It seems that even in death, equality is not reached, or at least not what we can see here on "this side".
We entered the mosque, which has many scaffoldings surrounding it, especially on several of the minarets, from the main entrance. Upon entering the "guardian" asked for money so Zohara (my wife) could use a scarf as a head covering. Telling us that it was a "DEPOSIT" and that we would receive the 10YTL on exiting and returning the scarf. When we exited and returned the scarf to the guardian, he, all of a sudden, did not understand our English and refused to return our deposit, nor would he return to us the scarf...so be careful if you visit the Suleymaniye Mosque, maybe that is how they get money for the repairs.
Now for the sad part, much of the interior of the mosque was closed off for repairs, but there was NO MENTION of this on the exterior, only the entrance and one single room were we able to view and those are the few photos I show here.
Found a nice internet site that gives better explanations than I ever could at: http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/200605/suleymaniye/default.htm
Suleymaniye Mosque is considered by Turks the most beautiful mosque in Istanbul. It was built in the 16th century by the famous ottoman architect Mimar Sinan for Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent. It's also one of the largest mosques of Istanbul.
Near the mosque you can find an ancient graveyard and the Tomb of the Sultan and his wife.
Unfortunately, when we were in Istanbul the Mosque was under the reconstruction and we could enjoy only its exterior.
The second largest mosque in the city was built in 1557 by Mimar Sinan on the order of Sultan Suleyman the Magnificient. It was built during the most splendid period of the Ottoman Empire. The silhouette of the awesome mosque is a landmark of the city. The court faces the Golden Horn and offers a nice view.
The inside decoration is sober, based on alternate pale and red stones, stained glass windows, carved marble minbar and calligraphy. The feeling when I entered was the magnificence and the elegance of the building, a vast space almost square of 59 by 58 m.
The door that joins outer and inner courtyards is unique.
The complex includes the mosque, madrasa, hospital, lunatic asylum, infirmary tombs, a hamam, a market and a primary school. The tombs of Süleyman the Magnificent and his wife Hürrem (Roxelana) are in a covered cemetery.
Most prominent in its position a top of the city's seven hills and easily visible from the Golden Horn as the highest point of the city skyline, Suleymaniye Camii is also considered, arguably, to be Mimar Sinan's greatest achievement. Named for its benefactor, Suleyman the Magnificent, it was completed in 1557. It was the fourth imperial mosque constructed following the Muslim Conquest in 1453. It is one of the most-visited mosques in the city and for good reason as many consider it to be grandest of the many mosques built over the past 500 plus years. Sinan is buried in a tomb just outside the mosque complex (it was part of the complex in the 16th century).
Unfortunately I cannot provide a first-hand description of the courtyard or the mosque interior as, sadly, it had been closed for a 2-year renovation just the week before our arrival. That's the second Sinan mosque we couldn't see on this trip because of renovations! Just means we'll have to come back some day....
The mosque is scheduled to reopen in 2010 so plan your trip accordingly if it is on your must-see list.
[…] The mosque suffered the damage from fire in 1660 and from the earthquake in 1766. It was restored in several occasions, the last time in 1956 to gain its faithful appearance. The mosque interior, mostly red in colour, decorated with Iznik tiles is very spacious and astonishingly beautiful.
In the garden behind the mosque there are two mausoleums – turbes – one of Suleiman the Magnificent and the other of Hurrem, Suleiman's wife of Russian, Ukrainian of Georgian origin, the first especially powerful and the most influential woman of the Ottoman Empire. Turbe of Sinan is just outside the walls of the mosque to the north, across the street named Mimar Sinan Caddesi in his honour. The mosque complex includes medreses – theological schools, school of medicine, caravanserai – building for rest and recover from the day's journey, Turkish bath, kitchen and hospice for the poor.
Suleiman the Magnificent was the most powerful ruler of his time, the greatest ruler of Ottoman Empire and one of the most significant rulers in the history. Appropriate to his title – the mosque he was the patron of, built between 1550 and 1557, is the magnificent building. Constructed on the highest point of the Golden Horn's west bank, the mosque is the artwork of architect Sinan, the greatest architect of Ottoman Empire and "the closest Turkey gets to a Renaissance architect". Sinan, man of Greek or Armenian origin, lived for almost a century, was the chief Ottoman architect during the region of four sultans and constructed about four hundred buildings!
Suleymaniye Camii – Suleiman Mosque is 59 m in length and 58 m in width. The main dome is 53 m high and has a diameter of 26.5 m. It has four minarets with a total of 10 galleries indicating that Suleiman the Magnificent was the 10th Ottoman sultan.
To be continued in PART II…
It's sad...many people in their rush to see Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque forget about this one...it's equally as beautiful and devoid of many of the tourists that the other two icons attract. There is more to Istanbul the Topkapi, Hagia Sofia, the Blue Mosquw, and the Grand Bazaar, belive me. Dig deeper and you will find something beautiful.
This was probably my favourite mosque in Istanbul. It was built in 1557 under the orders of Suleiman the Magnificent and designed by Sinan. The sultans Suleiman II, Ahmed II and Safiye (died in 1777), the daughter of Mustafa II, are also buried here. Just outside the mosque walls to the north is the tomb of architect Sinan.
The mosque and the area surrounding it is much more peaceful than the Blue Mosque and considerably more quiet. The gardens surrounding it are a perfect place to stop and escape the bustle of the city below.
built in 1557, by the greatest architect of the east: Sinan.
it shaped the whole skyline of Istanbul, and in almost any silüet photo of the city, you can see the building.
the near district is full of many attractions including the Beyazit Square, the tombs of Suleyman the Magnificent and Sinan the Great; historical mosques, cookhouses, libraries, madrasah's (universities of old times) and so on. the disctrict is where history lives together with the today; and while climbing up the narrow streets, you can feel as if you are walking in the 16th century; and as if am Jannisary may come up from the corner.
actually, I walked on the empty streets on a peaceful sunday morning, the weather was slighly rainy and there were clouds just as in the secenes of "Distant" of Nuri Bilge Ceylan. so the view and the atmosphere was great.
and i can suggest anyone to travel in Eminonu on Sundays, even if the Grand Bazaar and most of the shops are closed.
The simple interior is decorated with stained-glass windows by artist Sarhos Ibrahim, tiles, renowned for its decorative ceramics, and calligraphic inscriptions.
On the oil lamps, hanging low in order to burn easily and for better illumination, you might spot some black round objects. Those are boiled ostrich eggs whose scent prevents spiders.
Süleymaniye Mosque, one of the principal mosques of Istanbul, built between 1550 and 1557 for Ottoman sultan Süleyman the Magnificent , was designed by Sinan.
It is surrounded by a wall and overlooks the Golden Horn.
If you step into the courtyard, you’ll see, topped by 28 domes, four minarets, one at each of its four corners, and ten balconies. The minarets are said to signify that Süleyman was the fourth sultan of Ýstanbul, and the balconies to refer to his position as the tenth Ottoman monarch.