5 important works by Mimar Sinan in Istanbul
1) Büyükçekmece Bridge
Considered the greatest Ottoman architect, Mimar Sinan (Architect Sinan) held the title of State Architect for a decade, beginning under the reign of Sultan Süleyman. Built between 1566 and 1567 and composed of four connected arch bridges on artificial islands, the Büyükçekmece Bridge is one of Sinan’s lesser-known but equally magnificent works.
2) Rüştem Paşa Mosque
Hidden away in the backstreets near Eminönü Square, Sinan built this beautiful structure for Rüştem Paşa, Grand Vizier to Süleyman the Magnificent in 1563. Known fondly as a smaller version of the Blue Mosque without the crowds, the mosque is notable for its incredible Iznik tile decoration.
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3) Mihrimah Sultan Mosque
Commissioned by Sultan Süleyman for his favourite daughter princess Mihrimah, this imperial mosque complex was built by Sinan in the 1560s. There’s another Mihrimah Sultan Mosque in Üsküdar, and according to legend the sun sets at the Edirnekapı mosque while the moon rises from the Üsküdar mosque annually on March 21 (the princess’s birthday).
4) Şehzade Mehmet Mosque
Commissioned by Süleyman the Magnificent to honour the memory of his son Mehmet who died of smallpox at the age of 22, Şehzade Mehmet is Sinan’s first major sultanic mosque. Built between 1544 and 1555, the octagonal mausoleum of Mehmet and the mosque’s beautiful minarets are worthy of admiration.
5) Sokullu Mehmet Paşa Mosque
Designed in 1571 for Esmahan Sultan (Sokullu Mehmet Paşa’s wife), actual pieces of the Ka’aba in Mecca were used in the construction of this mosque’s mihrab and mimber. The beautiful Iznik tiles and stained-glass windows inside are also quite exceptional.
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