|UNESCO World Heritage Site No. 1366 |
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Selimiye Mosque (tour. Selimiye Camii) - the standard of the Turkish mosque located in the city of Edirne and included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The Selimiye Mosque, erected by the architect Sinan in 1569-1575, is one of the outstanding architectural achievements of Islamic culture and is considered the most harmonious temple complex in the country. The yard and the building are not separate parts, but a single whole. This complex of buildings is called in Turkish külliye and includes a hospital, school, library and baths located around the mosque, as well as madrassas, dar-ül hadis (Hadith house), a clock room and a number of shops. This also includes the Bayezid II Mosque (tour: İkinci Beyazıt Külliyesi), which now houses the Health Museum. Sinan created an octagonal vault support system consisting of eight columns.
One cannot but visit the Selimiye Mosque - the most grandiose and most famous mosque built by the great Ottoman architect Mimar Sinan. The construction of the mosque was started by Sultan Selim II, and completed after his death, even if the mosque is not large, but it has even more elegant outlines than the huge Suleymaniye Mosque in Istanbul, moreover, they say that Sinan called this building the best work of his life!
To appreciate the design of the mosque, enter it through the western entrance - just as the architect planned (otherwise you can get here through the terrace park and rows of shops from the south side).
A wide, high dome (a little even wider than in Istanbul's Hagia Sophia is supported by eight columns, arches and a vaulted gallery hidden in the walls, creating a unique feeling of spaciousness. Thanks to the even distribution of the dome's weight on the walls, they managed to place many windows - which allowed filling the room mosques with light, calligraphic inscriptions in Arabic are around the window openings, giving the building even more originality. Under the main dome is a mimber (analogue of the pulpit) and All, absolutely all the details of the interior of the shrine are striking in their grace, which is equally evident in the ceramic mosaics İznik around the mihrab (mihrab - a niche pointing to Mecca) and in the carved marble mimber ornaments.
Photo and description
One of the most outstanding architectural masterpieces of Islamic culture is the Selimiye Mosque. This temple complex includes a school, library, hospital, baths, madrassas, a clock room, several shops. The construction was built in 1568-1574 by the famous architect Sinan, who considered this mosque his best work. When this architectural masterpiece was being built, the architect was about 90 years old.
Mimar (which means "builder") Sinan is one of the most famous architects of the Muslim world, whose name is associated with an unprecedented flowering of Ottoman architecture. He designed more than three hundred buildings, architectural ensembles and places of worship erected in Turkey, Syria, Bosnia, and Crimea. Sinan was born in a village in Asia Minor and in his youth came under recruitment. The future architect was sent to Istanbul and became a janissary (personal protection of the Sultan, recruited not from Muslims). In one of the campaigns of Suleiman the Magnificent in Moldova, Sinan led the construction of a bridge over the Prut River. The bridge was built in thirteen days and the Sultan really liked. After that, Sinan became the chief imperial architect and stayed in this position for about fifty years. As a military engineer, he built underground storage rooms and bridges, as an architect - palaces, mosques, public baths and caravanserais. The most interesting works were erected by him in the second half of his life.
The Selimiye Mosque was built by order of Selim, the son of Sultan Suleiman and his wife Roksolana. Unlike his parents, Selim was not attractive in appearance - obese, short, with a red swollen face. He did not possess the talents of a statesman or warrior. Selim was lazy, very licentious and indifferent to everything except his own pleasures. The love of alcohol was his strongest passion. He entrusted all state affairs to the great vizier Sokoll. It should be noted that this least distinguished of the Ottoman sultans himself composed poetry, imitating the Persian authors. Death overtook the Sultan in the bathhouse when he alone drunk a bottle of wine, slipped and fell, banging his head on marble slabs.
During the construction of the mosque, Selimiye Sinan created a unique octagonal arch support system, which consists of eight reliable columns. The octahedron made it possible to make them not very massive and, moving it to the wall, to clear the central space of the mosque. Small half-domes, which alternate with piers, are almost invisible from the outside. On the facade, eight buttresses are very clearly visible, which give a circular appearance to the entire structure. At the first inspection, you may not notice the rectangular layout of the mosque, which is masked by original architectural solutions.
In the very center of the mosque there is a magnificent fountain covered with an interesting carved roof, which is quite rare for a religious building of those times. Four minarets about eighty meters high are installed in the corners of the mosque. They are almost twice as high as the central dome and are the second highest in the world after the Mecca minarets. Inside the minarets are beautiful and isolated from each other spiral staircases, through which you can climb onto balconies (there are three of them at each minaret).
Light enters the mosque through 24 windows located in arches. The interior of the building is artfully decorated with purple marble, wood carvings and calligraphy. In the prayer hall over six marble columns are five domes. In addition, it is decorated with stained-glass windows and marble carvings. The courtyard is decorated with soft Edirnean red sandstone. Around the mihrab and in the sultan gallery to the left of it are beautiful Iznik tiles.
Selimiye Mosque, built of ashlar, is located on a small hill. Surrounded by four high minarets directed to the sky, it dominates all city buildings and is perfectly visible from everywhere. Entrance to the mosque is also allowed for non-Muslims. The Selimiye Mosque is one of the main attractions not only of the city of Edirne, but of the whole of Turkey. Not so long ago, the building was honored to be on the UNESCO World Heritage List.