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Ottoman Empire and its Architecture

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Ottoman Empire, Islamic-run superpower was created by Turkish tribes in Anatolia which grew to be one of the most powerful states in the world during the 15th-16th century. The Ottoman flourished for more than 600 years and came to an end only in 1922, when it was replaced by the Turkish Republic. It was one of the most longest-lasting dynasties in history. The chief leader, the Sultan, was given religious and political power over his people. The Empire is known for its great regional stability and security, and also has important achievements in the arts, science, religion and culture.

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The Ottomans were known for their achievements in all fields such as art, science and medicine. The empire was renowned for its artistic hubs, especially during the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent. The most prominent forms of art included calligraphy, painting, poetry, textiles and carpet weaving, ceramics and music. Ottoman architecture clearly defined the culture of the time and the empire. Big and historic mosques and public buildings were constructed during this period.

The Ottoman Empire is known for its spectacular architectural forms especially the mosques, forts, palaces and tombs. Some of the most popular buildings are: The Topkapi Palace is the largest and one of the most popular sites in Istanbul. It was built from 1466 to 1478 by the then ruling sultan, Mehmet II. The original layout consisted of four consecutive courtyards surrounded by high walls. Each courtyard served different purposes and was separated by a gate that restricted entry to the private third and fourth courtyards. The surviving buildings of the palace are generally low, one or two-story structures that have changed functions over the centuries. Hence wise the purpose of some buildings, like the harem, is not clear.

The construction of this mosque was completed in 1566, when the Ottomans had control of the Sofia city in Bulgaria. The mosque derives its name from the words Banya Bashi, which means “many baths”. The most striking feature of the mosque is that it was built over natural thermal spas. It is possible to this day to see the steam rising from vents in the ground near the mosque walls. The mosque is also famous for its large dome having a diameter of 15m, and one standing minaret.


The Blue Mosque also known as Sultan Ahmed Mosque is located in Istanbul, Turkey. It was constructed from 1609 to 1616 during the rule of Ahmed I. It contains Ahmed’s tomb, a teaching room and leisure area. The interior of the mosque is made with Hand-painted blue tiles, and at night the mosque is lit in blue as lights frame the mosque’s five main domes, six minarets and eight secondary domes. It includes some Byzantine Christian with traditional Islamic architecture and is considered to be the last great mosque of the classical period.

The interior of the mosque is dominated by blue paint. 200 stained glass windows with intricate designs allow natural light to fall in. The cornices, columns and the walls are decorated with verses from the Qur’an. The floors are adorned with carpets, which are donated by the people who want to help and these are regularly replaced as they wear out. There are many spacious windows that create a spacious environment. The most important element of the mosque is the Mihrab, which is made of finely carved and sculptured marble, with a niche and a double inscriptive panel above it. It is surrounded by many windows. The adjacent walls are covered in ceramic tiles.

Cite this Ottoman Empire and its Architecture

Ottoman Empire and its Architecture. (2021, Apr 24). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/ottoman-empire-and-its-architecture/

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