Piyale Pasha Mosque

Piyale Pasha Mosque is a historical landmark of the Kasımpaşa neighbourhood, located near Piyalepaşa Boulevard in the Beyoğlu district of Istanbul. During the reign of Sultan Selim the 2nd, the mosque was built under the orders of chief admiral, Piyale Pasha, in 1573. Initially, Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, father of Sultan Selim the 2nd, had ordered his groom (Husband of Suleiman’s granddaughter Gevher Sultan) Piyale Pasha to build a new Islamic-ottoman social complex outside the walled city. Consequently, several neighbourhoods and the Piyale Pasha Mosque as well as its social complex were built under the orders of Piyale Pasha outside the walled city. Unfortunately, Suleiman the Magnificent couldn’t see the opening of Islamic-ottoman social complex he ordered. The construction was completed in 1573 during the reign of Sultan Selim the 2nd, 6 years after Suleiman’s death. There are however, contradictions about the architect of the mosque. According to strong beliefs, Piyale Pasha had ordered Architect Sinan for the construction of the architecture. Yet, Architect Sinan was responsible for the construction of the Selimiye Mosque, whose construction order was given directly by Sultan Selim the 2nd. Therefore, it doesn’t seem to be possible for the mosque to be constructed directly by Architect Sinan. Most likely, the Piyale Pasha Mosque was built by an assistant master of Architect Sinan under the trust of Architect Sinan himself. In the past, there used to be a water channel that reached out between Kasımpaşa and Haliç (Golden Horn). Land reclamations were applied in several areas of Istanbul, so the Piyale Pasha Mosque was left inland in comparison with the sea over the years.

The Piyale Pasha Mosque is 30, 5*19, 5 meters in size. The roof is quadrangular in shape and consists of 6 main domes 9 meters in diameter each. In addition, the roof is a little bit extended with pendentives at cut edges. That the mosque has just one minaret which is not quite usual in Ottoman Architecture. In addition, a careful eye can detect that the mosque looks similar to a ship if it is looked at certain angles. Also, the only single minaret of the mosque resembles a mast. This ship-like appearance is in a class of its own in the field of Ottoman Architecture. The taps of water fountains in the mosque courtyard have still exist today, while the other structures of Islamic-ottoman social complex such as madrasah, lodge, elementary school and bazaar have not. Piyale Pasha’s seven daughters and four sons from Gevher Sultan lie under the sod in a mausoleum nearby the mosque. Most recently, the Piyale Pasha Mosque was restored by the general directorate of foundations in 2007.

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Kasımpaşa Zincirlikuyu Cad. No: 252 34440 Beyoğlu, İstanbul
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