Monday, July 24, 2017


Tepebaşı, Beyoğlu - Istanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°01'54.4"N 28°58'30.1"E / 41.031788, 28.975019

Pera Museum / Anatolian Weights And Measures photo peramuseum_weights122.jpg



The Anatolian weights and measures collection that Suna and İnan Kıraç began to create in the 1980s has grown rapidly over the years with the purchase of pieces accumulated by some collectors as well as regular purchases from other sources both in Turkey and abroad, and is now one of the most remarkable collections of its type in Turkey.

Today this collection consists of nearly a thousand objects dating from prehistory to the present day used in Anatolia. These comprise the main types of scales and measuring instruments used for measuring weights, length and volume in every field from land measurement to commerce, architecture to jewellery making, and shipping to pharmacy. Illustrating as it does the relations between measuring systems of different periods and regions, enabling us to follow the various changes and continuities, the collection is a very valuable source of historical and scientific knowledge.

A broad selection focusing on the Islamic periods in Anatolia, but also including examples from other periods so as to show the full picture, is displayed in this gallery arranged in chronological order. Endeavour will be made to show pieces that it has not been possible to exhibit on this occasion at future thematic exhibitions from time to time, so throwing light on this exciting aspect of Anatolian cultural history.

Weights And Measures Systems From Egypt And Mesopotamia To Anatolia

Systems of weights and measures first developed in Egypt and Babylonia for the purpose of measuring quantities of agricultural products and land, and standardizing commercial transactions. The Egyptians are known to have first used scales around 3500 BC, and the ancient Greeks and Romans made wide use of instruments such as scales, steel yards, measuring containers and rulers, many examples of which have survived to the present day.

In the prehistoric period weights were often made in the form of animals, particularly sleeping ducks with their heads swivelled along their backs, and detailing worked in relief and engraved. Such weights in various sizes were most often carved from hematite, but also occasionally from white or cream coloured rock crystal. Motifs engraved on the undersides are thought to be marks identifying the owner.

Dating from 2000-1000 BC, such weights have been discovered at the sites of many Anatolian cities, and must have represented multiples of units such as the mana and shekel, used in the countries of the Near East at that period. Bronze balance pans and a cylindrical seal impression dating from 1900 BC demonstrate that scales were used, and that their weights were either of lead or stone. During the Assyrian Trading Colonies period silver ingots or marked rods measured by weight were used as vehicles of exchange.

The use of metal in Anatolia increased significantly towards the end of the Chalcolithic period, reflecting the development of trade relations in the region, and from commercial documents that have been deciphered, we know that units of weight originating in Mesopotamia were used in Anatolia. Although there is no firm evidence about the use of weights and measures in Anatolia prior to the Assyrian Colonies period, finds made of valuable metals with graduated markings are thought to have been used for measuring or for exchange in trade. For example, at Troy small gold bars and in particular graduated rods seem beyond doubt to show the existence of trade based on measurement.

The Hittites, like the other tribes of the Near East, used silver as a medium of exchange, in the form of rings or rods of specific size and weight. As in earlier times, hematite weights continued to be used to measure shekels and manas, units of weight that originated in Babylon.

Anatolian Weights and Measures in the Hellenic Period

The laws of Solon implemented around Athens in the Greek period are also thought to have been used in Anatolia. Solon ruled that the talent of weight (Greek talanton) should be 3 manas heavier than the monetary talent, distributing the difference between the constituent parts of the weight talent. This unit was the stater (873.2 g), equivalent to the old currency unit, the didrachmon. Fractions of this unit were also used.

The main Greek units of weight were the talent and mana, but these were not identical everywhere. For example, in Athens after the introduction of the Solonian standard this was equivalent to 36.39 kg when weighing commodities. As a monetary unit it was equivalent to metal weighing 25.92 kg. One sixtieth of a talent was a mna or mana. The principal liquid measures were the katule (0.27 liters) and the amphora (1.27 liters), while dry measures were the khonix (1.08 liters) and medimnos (51.84 liters).

In the famous History by Herodotus of Halicarnassus we find almost all the measurements of length used in Anatolia during the ancient Greek period:
foot : 0.296 cm (the modern foot is 30.48 cm)
finger : one sixteenth of a foot, 0.0185 meters
cubit : 1.5 feet, 0.444 meters
fathom : 6 feet, 4 cubits, 1.776 meters
plethron : 100 feet
stadium : 600 Greek feet. The Athens stadium was equivalent to 177.6 meters.
palm : one quarter of a foot, 6 palms equalled one cubit
skenes : Egyptian unit equivalent to 60 stadiums, 10.656 km
parasang : Iranian unit equivalent to 30 stadiums, 5.328 km

Roman and Byzantine Steelyards and Scales

In the Roman and Byzantine periods we find the steelyard (statera) being used as well as the scales or balance (libra) that had been the only means of weighing in antiquity. The steelyard consists of a square-section arm fitted with a sliding weight, and a hook for hanging the object to be weighed. Two or three faces of the arm are graduated with notches at equal intervals enabling light, medium and heavy loads to be weighed.

A balance consists of a horizontal beam pivoted onto a vertical support, with pans attached by silk strings of equal length to the two ends of the beam. Scales of this kind were used to measure precious metals, coins, and other light but valuable substances.

Examples in museums and private collections enable us to track the modifications made to steelyards from the Roman and Byzantine periods until modern times (use of the steelyard continuing until about two decades ago). For example while Roman and Byzantine steelyards had three hooks, those used by by the Seljuks and Ottomans had only two. The traditional balance, on the other hand, has not changed at all over the centuries, and remains in use with the same form today.

Seljuk And Beylik Period Weights And Measures

The pre-Ottoman Turkish system of measurement had its origins in Central Asia as a result of trade relations with Iran and China. The 11th century dictionary of Turkish dialects, Divanu Lugati't-Türk, is an important source of information about units of weight and measurement, defining the artık as half a yük (load), the kırklım as a pile, and the sagu as a measure of cereals, for example. Sources dating from the 14th century reveal that the pre-Ottoman Anatolian system of measurements was based on the lodra, an Iranian-Ilkhanid unit of weight, the kantar, okka and batman (menn); and that the main units of grain measurement were the kile and müdd.

The most important source of information about Seljuk period weights and measures are the deeds of pious endowments. From these we learn that the ukiyye, irdeb, müd and batman were the basis of the measuring system of this period that was largely adopted by the Turkish principalities and the Ottoman Empire. The expansion of trade relations between the Menteşe and Aydınoğulları Turkish emirates in western Anatolian and the Byzantines, Venetians and Genoese, led to the introduction of Byzantine and Italian units of measurement, which began to be used in Anatolia in the 14th century. One example was the Italian rotolo, used in western Anatolia

Ottoman Units of Length

The fundamental unit of length in the Ottoman Empire was the arşın. Three types of arşın were used : the mimari arşın (architect's arşın), the çarşı arşın (market arşın) and the endaze. The mimari arşın was 75.8 cm, longer than the other two, and so named because it was used for measuring land and buildings. It was also known as the bina arşını (building arşın). One twenty-fourth of an architect's arşın was called a parmak, one twelfth of a parmak a hat, and one twelfth of a hat a nokta. In other words one architect's arşın equalled 24 parmak, 288 hat and 3456 nokta respectively.

The metric equivalents of these units are as follows :
1 architect's arşın = 75.8 cm
1 parmak = 3.158 cm
1 hat = 0.263 cm
1 nokta = 0.0219 cm

Arşın measuring rods were made of boxwood, ebony, ivory, iron or steel, and graduated in parmak. For excavation purposes, another unit of length called the kadem, half of the architect's arşın and equivalent to 12 parmak, was used. The kulaç (fathom) was used for excavations, boring wells, and measuring water depth. One kulaç was equivalent to 2.5 architect's arşın, and 100 kulaç was equivalent to 2500 architect's arşın, or a mil (mile), while one fersah (league) was equivalent to 3 mil or 7500 architect's arşın. A fersah was approximately the distance covered in an hour by a person walking at ordinary speed. Four fersah was known as a berit or menzil, and two berit as a merhale.

Introduction of the Metric System

The process of introducing the metric system began during the reign of Sultan Abdülaziz with an imperial edict and statute dated 20 Cemaziyelahir H 1286 (1869). Under this statute the meter was accepted as the unit of length, and named the zira-ı a'şari (decimal zira) to encourage public acceptance by use of the accustomed term zira (an alternative term for arşın).

At the same time the are (100 square meters) became the unit of land area; the cubic decimeter, named öşr-i zira küp (tenth of a zira cubed) and the liter units of volume; and the dirhem-i a'şari (decimal dirhem) or gram the unit of weight. Under articles 2 and 7 of the new law a standard zira-i a'şari rule and a standard kilogram weight were to be manufactured from platinum and kept in the Imperial Treasury. The new law was to go into effect for official transactions in March H 1287, but the general public could continue to use both old and new measures together until March H 1290, when use of the old measures would be prohibited.

These initiatives during the reign of Sultan Abdülaziz failed to bring the new metric system into widespread general use, and another statute was passed by Sultan Abdülhamid II in 1881. From 1883 metric weights began to be stamped. However, in 1895 the country reverted to use of the dirhem, and the metric system was not finally and irrevocably instituted until the Measurements Act was promulgated on 26 March 1931 after the establishment of the Turkish Republic.


WEB SITE : Pera Museum

E-Mail :
Phone : +90 212 334 9900
Fax : +90 212 245 9512

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.


Tepebaşı, Beyoğlu - Istanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°01'54.4"N 28°58'30.1"E / 41.031788, 28.975019

Pera Museum / Orientalist Paintings photo pera_paintings106.jpg


Inaugurated on 8 June 2005, Pera Museum is a private museum founded by Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation with the aim of  offering a broad range of high-quality culture and arts services.

The Museum is located in the historic building of the former Hotel Bristol in Tepebaşı, renovated between 2003 and 2005 by restorer architect Sinan Genim, who preserved the façade of the  building and transformed the interior into a modern and fully equipped museum.

Pera Museum shares its three permanent collections “Orientalist Paintings”, “Anatolian Weights and Measures”, and “Kütahya Tiles and Ceramics,” as well as the values that these collections represent, with the public through exhibitions, publications, audio-visual events, educational activities, and academic works,  striving to transmit these values to future generations.

Having organized joint projects with leading international museums, collections, and foundations including Tate Britain, Victoria and Albert Museum, St. Petersburg Russian State Museum, JP Morgan Chase Collection, New York School of Visual Arts, and the Maeght Foundation, Pera Museum has introduced Turkish audiences to countless internationally acclaimed  artists, among them  Jean Dubuffet, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Rembrandt, Niko Pirosmani, Josef Koudelka, Joan Miró, Akira Kurosawa, Marc Chagall, Pablo Picasso, Fernando Botero, Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Goya.

Since its inauguration, Pera Museum collaborates annually with national and international institutions of art and education to hold exhibitions that support young artists. All  of  the Museum’s exhibitions are  accompanied by books, catalogues, audio-visual events, and  education programs. Standing out with its seasonal programs and events, Pera Film offers visitors and  film buffs a wide range of screenings that extend from classics and independent movies to animated films and documentaries, as well as special shows paralleling the temporary exhibitions’ themes. Pera Museum has evolved to become a leading and distinguished cultural center  in one of the liveliest quarters of İstanbul.


Throughout the ages, the Orient has attracted the interest of the West. European intellectual and artists have been mesmerized since the earliest times by this presumably mysterious and relatively closed world. As a natural consequence, during various periods many artists, either by traveling themselves or by traveling in their imaginations, sought to discover the essence of the Orient, and depicted or expressed in their works either the real Orient or their own visions of it.

The movement known as Orientalism in European art, which appeared in conjunction with the Romanticist movement of the 19th century, focused on the East, primarily in the lands of the Ottoman Empire. Even long before the rise of Orientalism in European art, many European artists, fascinated by their first glimpses of the mysterious East and by the Turquerie fashion which was the result of the new relations with the Ottoman world. For nearly two hundred years, starting from the 18th century, numbers of painters, some of whom became known as the Bosphorus Painters, worked intensively in the lands of the Empire and depicted the Ottoman world its various aspects, consequently engraving those images in mankind's visual memory.

The exhibition Portraits from the Empire sheds light on a special part of this opulent world. Almost sixty paintings selected from the Suna and İnan Kıraç and Sevgi and Erdoğan Gönül collections bring us face to face with the peoples of the Ottoman world, their portraits and portrayals, sometimes very familiar and sometimes remote, even nearly foreign, in their physiognomies. These paintings, most of them created before the eye of the camera replaced the human eye, in the times when observing, studying, interpreting and depicting the world was the priority of painters, present the lost faces of an era long past with amazing reality and vividness.

Sultans and Portraits

The Ottomans played a prominent role in the power balance of Europe from the 15th century, as their territories in the Mediterranean region and Europe expanded, and this led to increasing European interest in Turkey and the Turks, an interest focused above all on the structure of the Ottoman state. In the 18th century in particular, growing political and trade relations brought not only many diplomats, merchants and travelers to the Ottoman capital, but also many artists, most of whom were employed in diplomatic circles. Under their influence Western style portraiture began to gain ground in Ottoman court circles.

There had been a tradition of painting portraits of the Ottoman sultans in the miniature technique since the 16th century, usually in the form of portrait albums depicting all the Ottoman sultans from Sultan Osman, founder of the dynasty, onwards. From the 18th century this portrait series began to be executed using different techniques, such as oil painting, while at the same time local studios specializing in the production of portrait albums were established in Istanbul. From the reign of Selim III many local artists made portraits using western techniques, and Selim's nephew Mahmud II had his own portraits painted in oil, depicting him in the new western style dress that he had introduced, and had these hung in government offices.

Portraying Ottoman Society

European artists who came to Istanbul as members of diplomatic entourages depicted scenes from different parts of the Ottoman capital, distinctive costumes worn by the different classes of people in the empire, and portraits of foreign ambassadors, interpreters, and increasingly of Ottoman dignitaries. Vanmour, for example, in addition to several audience scenes and pictures of Istanbul, painted various state officials in their typical costume, and these were published in Marquis de Ferriol's Recueil de cent estampes representant differentes nations du Levant in 1714. A number of paintings of similar size in various collections and museums are thought to belong to this series of oil paintings by Vanmour.

One of the most notable of the European artists who worked in Istanbul in the 18th century was a knight of Malta Antoine de Favray, who arrived in Istanbul in 1762 and was employed by the French ambassadors Comte de Vergennes and Comte de St. Priest until 1771. His portraits of Vergennes and his wife show the couple not only dressed in Turkish costume but even seated in oriental style.

This tradition of painting, particularly portraiture, introduced by western artists, gradually spread from court and diplomatic circles to broader sectors of society; first to high-ranking state officials and then to leading Ottoman families, whose members increasingly commissioned portraits of themselves. Even more importantly, this tradition of oil painting influence local artists, one of the most renowned being Osman Hamdi Bey, who despite his oriental birth, did many works that place him among the artists of the orientalist movement.

The world of women and the "harem" as seen by western painters

In Orientalist iconography women and pictures of women hold an important place. To a large extent this is related to the fantasy of the 'harem,' which is one of the most important elements shaping both Orientalist literature and Orientalist painting. In Muslim countries the Arabic word 'harem', meaning a sacred place forbidden to enter, refers to the part of palaces and houses belonging to the women of the family. This concept of privacy and the sense of mystery it generated, particularly with respect to the palace, made the harem the most fascinating aspect of eastern life in the eyes of westerners.

Although Orientalist painters based their pictures of the harem mainly on written sources, they sometimes also used non-Muslim models or called on their powers of imagination. The imagined eroticism of life behind those closed doors, as much as the idea of its inaccessibility to the outside world, was what spurred interest in the harem. European men envisaged eastern women as sultanas or concubines living in a timeless world with nothing to do but prepare themselves for their masters.

In contrast, accounts and pictures by European women invited to visit Ottoman harems presents a different world. Their harems, although with occasional traces of A Thousand and One Nights, mainly portray dignified and respectable home environments. But it was writings and portrayals by men that dominated the Orientalist discourse, since they responded to the expectations of their western audience, unlike the more realistic ones by women.

Ottoman women and daily life

For the harems women, whose daily recreational pursuits were largely confined to conversation, embroidery, drinking coffee and smoking pipes, receiving guests and holding musical gatherings were occasions that added colour to their lives. In the palace harem there were orchestras and groups of dancers consisting of female slaves, and the female musicians were taught by the most eminent teachers of the time. Singing and playing music was one of the most popular pursuits of women at the palace and the upper echelons of society.

Ottoman women had limited opportunities for activities outside the home. The upper-class women rarely went shopping, most of their needs being met by servants or peddler women. Wedding celebrations and feasts, visits to holy tombs and sufi lodges, and friends and relatives, social gatherings known as 'helva nights', Mevlit ceremonies, weekly visits to the public baths, and above all picnics and country excursions in spring and summer were events that took women out of their homes. Western men, who had to make do with second-hand accounts of Ottoman harem life, only had the opportunity to see these women for themselves when they were traveling from place to place, shopping in the company of eunuchs, or enjoying country outings.

The most popular excursion places were Kağıthane on the Golden Horn and Göksu and Küçüksu on the Asian shore of the Bosphorus. Pleasing scenes of women in gauzy yashmaks and colourful outer robes promenading in their carriages, strolling in meadows, or being rowed along in graceful caiques, lacy sunshades in hand, were a favourite topic for western painters.

Women, costumes, portraits

Portraits focusing on women's costume form an important category of these pictures by western artists. Although the artists did not have the opportunity to observe Ottoman women at home, they could see women's clothing for themselves, and many of them purchased Ottoman garments to take back home with them and used these as studio accessories. Consequently we find many 18th and 19th century paintings of real European women or imaginary women dressed in Ottoman costume. Among diplomatic circles in Istanbul it was fashionable to be portrayed in Ottoman costume.

Painters unable to depict Ottoman women in indoor attire from life, instead portrayed Greek, Armenian, Jewish and Levantine women in such scenes. In fact, however, Ottoman palace women and those of the upper classes were keen to have their portraits painted, and western women painters such as Henriette Brown and Mary Walker were in popular demand. However, when these portraits showing them dressed in European clothing of the latest fashion were completed, they were not hung in full view, but concealed in cupboards or by a curtain so that the male servants of the household should not see them.


Since its earlier periods, The Ottoman Empire, has established intense relations with European states. Urged by curiosity and a certain degree of fear at times, the West's efforts, on the other hand, to be acquainted with and understand this government of immense military power and source of political authority, emerged as a political exigency. Undoubtedly, the encounter of markedly different cultures bore the most enduring fruit in the realm of arts.

Wars, the increase of trade as a means for mutual prosperity, and conflicts of status were the most significant factors behind the intense traffic of diplomacy. Sprawled across a vast geography, the Ottoman Empire welcomed more ambassadors than it sent to other countries, particularly until the 19th century; these ambassadors were embraced, per Ottoman tradition.

In turn, western ambassadors were prompted by the need to document the cities, particularly İstanbul, social structure, customs, administrative and military organization of the Ottoman Empire; apart from the reports they drafted upon their return, they also took advantage of the gifts and paintings they carried along. Often presumed to be true-to-life visual documents, such paintings thus became the most evident expressions of respectability and social status, and attained a special place and meaning, partly due to their potential to address the masses.

The works that ambassadors commissioned to artists they added to their retinue en route to the East or to their local counterparts they encountered during service, evolved into books with engravings or collections decorating the walls of European chateaus, and served as source material for works by other artists, thus generating a large visual repertoire on the Ottoman world. Ottoman ambassadors sent to European countries were subjects of monumental portraits painted by leading European artists of the period, immortalizing these historic visits.

This selection from the Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation Orientalist Painting Collection not only allows us to travel across the meandering paths of diplomatic history under the guidance of art, but it also introduces us to intriguing personalities. Ambassadors and painters continue to communicate with us through a silent yet equally rich and colorful language of expression, present their reports and letters, and share with us their respective periods, worldviews, travels and experiences, as well as the ceremonies they joined. Listening to their extraordinary tales, it is impossible not to be enraptured by the splendor and elegance of a lost age.

Ambassador's Portrait

Often used as one of the clearest indications of status and identity in western art since Antiquity, portraits also served a similar purpose for ambassadors. Furthermore, documenting the physiognomy of ambassadors through portraiture was also regarded as a precautionary measure against espionage. Portraits were painted of European ambassadors sent to the Ottoman Empire as high-level officials that have attained great respectability; artists to which these portraits were commissioned strived to reflect not only the physiognomy of the ambassadors, but the power and authority of the state and the ruler they represented.

The Ottoman State's political, military, commercial, and cultural relations with European states gained momentum from the 18th century onwards. In turn, the visits Ottoman ambassadors paid to western countries accelerated the spread of the Turquerie fashion of the period. While portraits of Ottoman ambassadors painted by renowned artists of the countries to which they were assigned served to honor the Ottoman Sultan and his representative, they also nurtured the West's penchant for exoticism.

There is no doubt that the ever-changing trends, fashions, as well as the purpose of diplomatic visits and political relations were reflected in the portraits. For example, while Kozbekçi Mustafa Ağa, who was sent to Sweden to collect debts, is portrayed standing -like a western emperor-, Yusuf Agâh Efendi, who left for England in the late 18th century as the first permanent ambassador of the Ottoman Porte, is depicted entirely in an eastern pose with the rosary beads he holds in his hand against a western background. When French Ambassador Comte de Vergennes commissioned portraits of himself and his wife in Ottoman attire per the Turquerie fashion, he was depicted in an eastern pose, thereby clearly emphasizing that he served as ambassador in İstanbul.

Paintings depicting the audience of European ambassadors at the Ottoman Palace constitute a special group of works that not only demonstrate a diplomatic event and reflect court traditions and officials in a range of attires, but they also act as portraits of foremost individuals, such as the sultan and the grand vizier. Borne directly out of and as a consequence of the realm of ambassadorial service, the best-known examples of this genre have been executed by Jean-Baptiste Vanmour.

Ambassador's Artist

Paintings by artists under the patronage of western ambassadors mainly carried weight as visual documents at times, whereas in other instances, they were appreciated as works that commemorated this prestigious service, popularizing and transmitting the name of each ambassador from one country or generation to the next. It is possible to assume that the Ottoman scenes Hans Ludwig von Kuefstein -the Holy Roman Empire's ambassador to the Ottoman Porte- commissioned were documentation-oriented works when they were initially executed.

On the other hand, Recueil Ferriol, the book of engravings that Marquis Charles de Ferriol had published based on the paintings of Jean-Baptiste Vanmour had a considerable impact; not only did the book immortalize the ambassador's legacy, but it influenced other artists with the subsequent editions released in different countries at different times.

As of the 18th century, western artists living in İstanbul became an indispensible part of the European way of social life developed around the embassies in Pera. Conceived as a "suburb of Paris," this western setting provided painters with a milieu from which they received commissions that enabled them to meet their social needs and thus sustained their life in İstanbul.

The interest ambassadors such as Choiseul-Gouffier and Robert Ainslie had in the archaeology and picturesque views of Antiquity during the second half of that century, as well as the paintings they commissioned and books they published in line with their world view reflecting the ideology of the Enlightenment, appear to be competing with one another as the harbingers of 19th-century Romanticism.

By the 19th century, western ambassadors assumed the role of patrons for Orientalist painters in İstanbul, such as Fabius Brest or Fausto Zonaro, who ventured out towards the exotic East independently of a diplomatic entourage. Similar, for example, to his painting that depicts British ambassador Sir Philip W. Currie's daughter in a palanquin to be used on her wedding ceremony, Zonaro received commissions from ambassadors and ambassadorial circles prior to becoming Abdülhamid II's court painter, and he was introduced to the Ottoman Palace by way of Russian ambassador Aleksandr Nelidov.


An Ottoman intellectual raised by the Tanzimat Era… An exceptional personality, who made substantial, diversified and lifelong contributions to various fields of culture and arts, such as painting, archaeology, museology, and art education.

More than 100 years after his death, the legacy Osman Hamdi Bey left behind lives in the works of academics, institutions, and museums. He continues to make headlines, draw attention, be heard, and become the topic of heated debates. This special section dedicated to Osman Hamdi Bey at the Sevgi and Erdoğan Gönül Gallery of Pera Museum not only displays different aspects of his impassioned relationship with the art of painting through his works included in the Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation Collection, but it also pays tribute to his multifaceted personality.


WEB SITE : Pera Museum

E-Mail :
Phone : +90 212 334 9900
Fax : +90 212 245 9512

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.


Tepebaşı, Beyoğlu - Istanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°01'54.4"N 28°58'30.1"E / 41.031788, 28.975019

Pera Museum / Kutahya Tiles And Ceramics photo peramuseum_tiles129.jpg


Visiting Hours : Tuesday to Saturday 10:00 - 19:00 / Sunday 12:00 - 18:00. The museum is closed on Monday.


The Pera Museum, which opened its doors in early June 2005, is the first step of a comprehensive cultural endeavor that the Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation has launched at this distinguished venue in the city for the purpose of providing cultural service on a variety of levels.

An historical structure which was originally constructed in 1893 by the architect Achille Manoussos in Tepebaşı (İstanbul's most prestigious district in those days) and which was, until rather recently, known as the Bristol Hotel, was completely renovated to serve as a museum and cultural center for the project. Transformed into a fully-equipped modern museum, this venerable building is now serving the people of İstanbul once again.

The first and second floors of the Pera Museum house three permanent collections belonging to the Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation, with the Sevgi and Erdoğan Gönül Gallery on the second floor. The third, fourth, and fifth floors are devoted to multipurpose exhibition spaces. There is an auditorium and lobby in the basement and on the ground floor are the reception desk and Perakende - Artshop and a cafe.

A large part of the first of the two museum floors above the ground floor displays choice examples from the foundation's collection of Anatolian Weights and Measures for the benefit of those who are in love with history and archaeology. Made from many different materials using many different techniques, these objects show the development of the devices used to weigh and measure in Anatolia since the earliest times.

The Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation's collection of Orientalist art consists of more than three hundred paintings. This rich collection brings together important works by European artists inspired by the Ottoman world from the 17th century to the early 19th.

This collection, which presents a vast visual panorama of the last two centuries of the Ottoman Empire, includes works by Osman Hamdi, regarded by art historians as the genre's only "native Orientalist" and of course his most famous painting The Tortoise Trainer. Many paintings from the private collections of the late Sevgi and Erdoğan Gönül have also entered the foundation's permanent collection. It is planned to exhibit the collection in the Sevgi and Erdoğan Gönül Gallery dedicated to their name in a series of long-term thematic exhibitions.

 The first of these, which opened in early June 2005, is called "Portraits from the Empire" and consists of portraits of sultans, princes, and other members of the Ottoman imperial family as well as of foreign ambassadors together with other "portraits" in the general sense, showing people from many different periods and walks of life.

In addition to its function as a private museum in which to display the collection of the family, the Pera Museum is also intended to provide the people of İstanbul with a broad range of cultural services as a modern cultural center located in a vibrant part of the city and equipped with multipurpose exhibition spaces, an auditorium and lobby, and activity spaces for visitors.


A large part of the first of the two museum floors above the ground floor in another wing is the foundation's collection of Kütahya Tiles and Ceramics, whose strikingly beautiful pieces seek to shed new light on an area of creativity in our cultural history that is not very well known.

The Collection

The beginnings of the Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation's Kütahya Tiles and Ceramics Collection date back to the 1980s, and over the years it has grown to become one of the most outstanding collections of its kind. Today the collection consists of over 800 remarkable pieces representing various periods, especially the 18th - 20th centuries. The limited number of pieces on display have been chosen to give a general idea of the collection and the craftsmanship of Kütahya ceramics.

After İznik, Kütahya was Ottoman Turkey's most important centre of ceramic production. Thanks to abundant deposits of clay in the area, ceramics were made here in large quantities in Phrygian, Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine times, and the traditional techniques of this art have survived to the present day. Although little research into ceramics produced in Kütahya during the early Ottoman and pre-Ottoman Turkish periods has as yet been carried out, recent finds and publications suggest that the industry essentially parallelled that of İznik.

The earliest known Kütahya ceramics are monochrome glazed bricks decorating the minaret balcony of Kurşunlu Mosque dated 1377, and tiles on the cenotaph and floor of the Tomb of Yakup II of the Germiyanoğlu principality dated 1428 and located in the imaret founded by the same ruler. Kütahya ceramics continued to be manufactured over the next centuries, the finest quality examples dating from the 17th and 18th centuries.

A decline in quality is observable from the second half of the 18th century, but there was a revival in the late 19th century, and with state support during the second quarter of the 20th century, this traditional ware has survived to the present day.

Kütahya ceramics stand somewhere between İznik ceramics, which primarily represented Court Art, and Çanakkale ceramics, which are usually regarded as 'Folk Art. The potters of Kütahya produced a wide range of tiles for architectural decoration and household pottery that was sold widely throughout the country. In terms of both the volume and continuity of production, Kütahya ceramics are a very significant area of Ottoman craftsmanship.

Forms and Motifs

Stylised floral motifs, religious motifs and human and animal figures decorate most of the 18th century tiles and ceramics in the Suna and İnan Kıraç Foundation's Kütahya Tiles and Ceramics Collection. The pieces dating from this period have a white or cream coloured paste, white slip and transparent glaze. The motifs are painted underglaze in green, turquoise, yellow, cobalt blue and, from the mid-18th century onwards, manganese purple, the motifs being outlined in black.

A second group of Kütahya ware consisting of dishes, lemon squeezer, bowls, bottles, plates and cups dating from the 18th century are decorated with stylised flowers, leaves and curling tendrils in cobalt blue, with the occasional addition of yellow, green or turquoise. Ewers and jugs of various shapes and sizes are decorated with cypress tree motifs in relief, circular crosshatched medallions and floral scrolls worked in free brushstrokes.

One of the foremost characteristics of the Ottoman Empire was the tolerant attitude and absence of discrimination on grounds of religion, race or culture. Consequently Muslim and Christian potters work together in Kütahya producing objects designed to meet the needs of both communities. Striking examples in this exhibition are pottery and tiles with motifs relating to the Christian liturgy.

Kütahya's contribution to architectural decoration over the centuries is illustrated by tiles dating from various periods in the last section of the exhibition, showing how Kütahya pottery set its mark to Ottoman society at every level, from coffee cups to monumental building decoration.


WEB SITE : Pera Museum

E-Mail :
Phone : +90 212 334 9900
Fax : +90 212 245 9512

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, July 23, 2017


Emirgan - Istanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°06'21.1"N 29°03'20.5"E / 41.105865, 29.055691

Sabanci University's Sakip Sabanci Museum photo sakipsabanci_museum109.jpg


The Sabancı University Sakıp Sabancı Museum is a private fine arts museum in Istanbul, dedicated to calligraphic art, religious and state documents, as well as paintings of the Ottoman era. The museum was founded by Sakıp Sabancı, and was opened in June 2002. Aside from permanent exhibitions, the museum also hosts national and foreign temporary exhibitions and, hosts cultural events on the weekends.

Atlı Köşk

Inside the entrance gate of the mansion - the statue of the horse (left) and a queue waiting to visit the exhibition "Salvador Dalí: A Surrealist in Istanbul". The historical building belonged to several high ranked pasha families and khedives, Egyptian governors, from 1848 until 1884, when it was purchased by the Ottoman Treasury on the orders of Sultan Abdülhamid II and presented as a gift to King Nicola I of Montenegro. The mansion served the next 30 years as a royal residence and embassy of Montenegro.

In 1913, the Ottoman government repossessed it, which became home to the granddaughter of Sultan Mehmed Reşad V. After the foundation of the Turkish Republic, Prince Mehmed Ali Hasan, grandson of Khedive İsmail Paşa, purchased the then derelict house and commissioned the architect Edouard de Nari to build the present house. However, it remained unused for many years until the elder sister of the Egyptian prince made it her home in 1944.

In 1951 Hacı Ömer Sabancı, father of Sakıp Sabancı and founder of Sabancı Holding, purchased the mansion for spending summer months with his family. Inside the entrance gate of his mansion, he placed the bronze statue of a horse, he purchased at an auction. The sculpture was designed by Louis-Joseph Daumas in Paris in 1864 and cast by Vor Thiebaut. The house became popularly known as Atlı Köşk (Equestrian Villa). He and his family lived in the mansion until his decease in 1966.

The mansion was home to Sakıp Sabancı and family between 1969 and 1999. The mansion was leased in 1998 for a period of 49 years to Sabancı University along with all the antique furnishings and art collections. Today, the original mansion and a modern gallery annex host extensive art collections of 19th and 20th century.

Today Sabancı University Sakıp Sabancı Museum presents a versatile museological environment with its rich permanent collection, the comprehensive temporary exhibitions that it hosts, its conservation units, model educational programs and the various concerts, conferences and seminars held there.

The Sakıp Sabancı Collection of Ottoman Calligraphy presents at a glance examples of 500 years of the art of Ottoman calligraphy. The Collection includes rare manuscript copies of the Holy Qur’an, individual inscriptions as well as assembled albums, panels, descriptions of the attributes of the Prophet, official documents such as decrees and grants of appointment, privilege and income, as well as tools used in the practice of this art. The Collection is displayed on the upper storey of the Atlı Köşk mansion.

Hacı Ömer Sabancı began collecting decorative art works consisting of figurines, metalwork, porcelain, objets d'art and furniture in 1940. Sakıp Sabancı expanded the art collection of his father since 1970. The collection includes 18th and 19th century Chinese porcelain Famille noire and Famille verte, polychrome vases and decorated plates. An impressive collection of 19th century French porcelain, including large numbers of Sèvres vases, and German porcelain produced in Berlin and Vienna are among the most valuable items in the collection.

The collection of calligraphy consisting of nearly 400 pieces offers a comprehensive view of Ottoman calligraphic art over a period of 500 years, with manuscript Korans and prayer books, calligraphic panels, decrees, imperial documents, declarations, imperial seals, poetry books and calligraphic tools. Sakıp Sabancı Collection of the Arts of the Book and Calligraphy consists of illuminated Korans, prayer books, calligraphic compositions, albums and panels written by well-known calligraphers, illuminated official documents bearing the imperial cipher of the Ottoman sultans as well as calligrapher’s tools, all produced during a period extending from the end of the 14th century to the 20th century.

More than 320 selected paintings of Ottoman and Republican era belonging to Sabancı painting collection are on display. The Sakıp Sabancı Painting Collection is composed of select examples of early Turkish painting as well as the works of foreign artists who worked in Istanbul during the later years of the Ottoman Empire. The collection is focused primarily on works created between 1850 and 1950, and in addition to works by Raphael and local artists such as Konstantin Kapıdağlı, Osman Hamdi Bey, Şeker Ahmed Paşa, Süleyman Seyyid, Nazmi Ziya Güran, İbrahim Çallı, Feyhaman Duran and Fikret Mualla, also includes the works of foreign artists like Fausto Zonaro and Ivan Ayvazovski.

The Sakıp Sabancı Museum Collection of Archaeological and Stone pieces is composed of works that have come down to us from Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman eras, and is exhibited in the garden of the Museum.

Three rooms on the entry level of the Atlı Köşk mansion are preserved with the furnishings and objects of decorative art of the 18th and 19th centuries that were in use during the period when the Sabancı Family resided there.

The primary mission of Sakıp Sabancı Museum’s conservation department is to maintain the integrity of the museum’s collection and make it accessible for future generations. Our conservation specialists prevent the decay of the nation’s cultural heritage, which in turn provides a valuable service for visitors and scientists alike.
The conservation department is responsible for the safe storage, display and registration of the museum’s artworks. In addition, the department is responsible for the conservation needs of any works loaned to the museum for temporary exhibitions hosted by Sakıp Sabancı Museum.

The museum conservators’ responsibilities also include :
Cleaning, consolidating and integrating of artworks
Providing guidance regarding correct packaging and handling of the artworks
Consulting with the exhibition designers on safe display of the artworks
Surveying the works on display and in storage

All of the cultural heritage assets within Sakıp Sabancı Museum are preserved by the rules of the international conservation policy. Climate, humidity and light levels are monitored 24 hours a day, and experts in preventative conservation are consulted regarding pest control, disaster/risk management and packing and handling. The museum has its own paper conservation studio, and also cares for paintings, furniture and archeological, decorative and stone works, with the consultation of specialists in these fields.

The Paper Conservation Studio
The paper conservation studio has existed since the museum was opened to the public and its aim is to conserve the museum’s collection of books and calligraphy. The museum’s paper conservators treat artworks in the collection regularly but can also be called upon to implement remedial treatment in light of demands made by the museum’s curators. During treatment the primary responsibility of the conservator is to preserve the artworks and to retain their aesthetic integrity. Considering the speed of technological developments in the field of conservation, reversible methods are implemented for all interventive treatments.

All of the artworks that are not on display are housed in our storage facility; the store is specifically designed for long-term storage of the collection. Framed works are hung on sliding grills, while furniture and sculpture are stored on shelves. Books and single-paper works are placed into acid-free boxes and stored in cabinets.

Installation of the artworks that are displayed in the museum is achieved in consultation with the conservation department. The museum conservators and the lenders of artworks collaborate on the installation of showcases and on the mounting of artworks. A conservation report is compiled and signed off by the conservators and lenders and the condition of the artworks are checked before and after the exhibition.

All of the artworks in the Sakıp Sabancı Museum Collection are digitally documented and a hard copy of the reports is archived. The database contains reports on physical and scientific information together with photographs. Any change in the location of the works in the collection is tracked using the catalogue and any conservation treatment is recorded in the conservation reports. Works that have been loaned to the museum have their own condition reports supplied by the lender institution and any treatment recommendations or environmental control prerequisites are strictly adhered to.

Request for Research and Photography
The Sakıp Sabancı Museum may grant permission for research and photography subject to  certain provisions and circumstances.


WEB SITE : Sakıp Sabancı Museum

E-Mail :
Phone : +90 212 277 2200
Fax: +90 212 229 4914

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.


Cibali, Fatih - İstanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°01'30.9"N 28°57'32.5"E / 41.025250, 28.959041

Rezan Has Museum photo rezanhas_museum151.jpg


The Rezan Has Museum is a private museum in Istanbul, Turkey dedicated to culture and arts. Rezan Has, spouse of the wealthy Turkish businessman Kadir Has, founded the museum in May 2007. The museum, situated in a historical building, is located in Cibali neighborhood of Fatih district on the southern shore of the Golden Horn. It is open to public every day between 9–18 local time.

The museum possesses actually no collections, however, provides space for exhibitions within the Kadir Has University's building, a European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage winning redevelopment from the historical "Cibali Tabacco Factory".

The museum consists of a cistern dating back to 11th century, called "Karanlık çeşme" (literally: "The Dark Fountain"), which is one of the few Byzantian structures outside of the Walls of Constantinople along Golden Horn. Another important part of the museum is a hamam ruin from the 17th century of the Ottoman era, which is situated at the top of the cistern.

The Golden Horn is being transformed into a “port museum”, nevertheless the Southern part should also be balanced through intensive activities similar to that of the Northern part. In this sense, the “Rezan Has Museum for Golden Horn Cultures” that will be established and located inside the Kadir Has University is a very important initiative and will fill a very important gap within the framework of such an important strategic geography.

This private museum is located inside the Kadir Has University in the Golden Horn, inside an old building which also contains some relics of a Byzantine cistern and Ottoman hamam. The museum displays paintings and documents belonging to important persons who draw the Golden Horn in the past centuries, objects from Anatolia, and so on.
Rezan Has Museum is not based on an existing collection. At present, the structure of the museum represents its main collection. Rezan Has Museum is comprised of two sections. Our wide collection of archeological artifacts from Neolithic Period to Seljuk Empire is exhibited on the museum floor while tematic and original exhibitions, including exhibitions on especially the Turkish Painting Art, are located in our multi-purpose exhibiton hall.

The museum is established at the Cibali Tobacco Processing and Cigarette Factory which was converted into the Kadir Has University. A Byzantine cistern called The Dark Fountain "Karanlık Çeşme" is located at the museum site which itself is individually an exhibition item. This cistern is one of the few Byzantine constructions along the Golden Horn apart from the city walls. Another important site of the Rezan Has Museum is the ruins of a “hammam” located in the museum which dates back to the Ottoman era.

Hosting genuine exhibitions and cultural activities since 2007 in the frame of its vigorous museum studies, Rezan Has Museum has become a museum site connecting the past to the future with its Ottoman hammam structure dated back to 17th century and Byzantine cistern to 11th century. The Museum enriched its collection by acquiring documents and objects  belonging to Cibali Tobacco and Cigarette Factory in 2009 along with its collection of archeological artifacts with nearly a history of 9,000 years.

It is known that the main building of the Kadir Has University, which represents the rich historical heritage of the city of Istanbul, consists of four layers. At the bottom layer there is a Byzantium cistern dating back to the 11th century and on top of it, ruins of a historical hammam belonging to the Ottoman Empire dating back to the 17th is found. The Cibali Tobacco Factory established in the 1880’s is located right on top of this foundation.

European Nostra 2003 Award
European Cultural and Natural Heritage Union Europa Nostra is an independent establishment working to protect the world’s culture heritage. The main building of the Kadir Has University converted from Cibali Tobacco and Cigarette Factory won the 2003 Europe Nostra Award, the European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage as the best preserved building for protecting and keeping our historical and cultural heritage alive.

Byzantine Seferikos Cistern
The cisterns, water reservoirs made of stone, were structures which played an important role in meeting water requirements of Istanbul in Byzantine period. The Byzantine period cistern taking place in our museum and dated back to late 11th century is comprised of 48 arches, 15 pillars and 20 columns. This structure having a square-like rectangular plan was built directly to accumulate water. It was brought to light during excavations in 1944 by Istanbul Archaeological Museums and it is situated inside the Rezan Has Musuem Golden Horn Cultures.

After losing its function as a cistern, it was first used as the tobacco warehouse of Cibali Tobacco and Cigarette Factory and then as a supply warehouse and a shelter by the workers of the tobacco factory during the 2nd World War.

Ottoman Hammam
The cistern which was used as a hammam in the 17th century, after conquer of Istanbul, also witnessed the historical events of that period. The part of the cistern which is used as a hammam was discovered as a result of excavation studies. The marble platform and steam channels of the hammam structure, on the other hand, are still in good condition.

Tobacco Factory  
Cibali region has started to develop after the conquest of Istanbul by Mehmet the Conqueror in 1453. There were two factors combining Cibali region with the identity of Istanbul. First of them was fires, although it seems a little strange, as there were many fires in this region while the second was the tobacco factory and tobacco warehouse carrying the same name as the region. There were fires happening frequently as mentioned since Cibali was a trade center and there were many flammable materials used in shipbuilding works at that location.

Fires in the interior and surrounding regions of city walls at Haliç were becoming very serious threats especially during winds from the northeast direction since there were a lot of wooden houses in that region at that time. Many disasters of fire have been called “Cibali fires”. Cibali Tobacco Factory which was established in 1884 was a very important institution changing the region both in economical and social aspects. Starting its activities at the beginning of 1900s, the large factory building was being used both for tobacco processing and cigarette manufacturing purposes.

Such a big factory has been established in the region for a couple reasons. Tobacco customs were around this region and many of the workers making up the workforce in the factory were living in the said region. The factory has been acquired by state authorities as of 1 March 1925 after a 45 year’s period of French operations.

We may have a good idea of that time if we look at the photographs taken in 1900s telling about the life at the factory. There were a total of 2162 employees working in the factory, 1500 female and 662 male workers. Tekel Cibali Tobacco Factory was in fact a small city with its own police station, social service personnel, hospitals, social facilities, grocery stores, schools, a fire station, trade unions and restaurants.


WEB SITE : Rezan Has Museum

E-Mail : /
Phone : +90 212 533 6532 / +90 212 534 1034

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.


Karaköy. Beyoğlu - Istanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°01'26.1"N 28°58'24.7"E / 41.023927, 28.973525

Ottoman Bank Museum photo ottoman_museum124.jpg


The Ottoman Bank Museum, located in the former head office of the Ottoman Bank on Voyvoda Street, operates under the aegis of the Garanti Bank sponsored Ottoman Bank Archive and Research Center. The museum, organized in and around the bank's safe room, draws on a wealth of information from the bank's archive to narrate the history of this institution, which operated as the central bank, bank of issue, and treasurer of the Ottoman Empire.

Apart from the history of the institution itself, the objects and documents displayed in the museum aim to provide a series of insights into the fascinating world of the late Ottoman and early Republican period. Based on a combination of chronological and thematic approaches, the museum thus examines the main phases of the evolution of the bank, while at the same time offering glimpses into the social, economic, and political environment of the time through bank branches, customer files, market operations and personnel profiles.

The museum script starts with the establishment of the bank in 1856 and its promotion to a state bank status in 1863. Following the hardships of the 1870s, the narrative analyzes the rapid growth of the institution from the 1880s on, up to its apex on the eve of World War I. From this point on, the exhibit shifts to a thematic approach, concentrating on documents reflecting the social, political, and economic environment in which the bank operated.

Commercial transactions, stock exchange operations, a widening network of branches, various categories of customers, profiles of prominent or atypical clients, staff photographs and files are thus used to revive the 'human' conditions that characterized the troubled world of the end of the nineteenth and first decades of the twentieth centuries. Returning to a chronological flow, the exhibit then moves on to the difficulties experienced during the Great War, the first contacts established with the Kemalist government on Ankara, and to the process of adaptation to the new balance of power emerging with the establishment of the Republic.

The safe rooms located at the center of the main exhibit hall are used to display a number of archival series similar to the documents displayed in the historical narrative. Each of the four intertwined safe rooms constituting a 'steel fort'-as its constructor Samuel Chatwood named it-is thus devoted to a particular type of documents: accounting books and stocks and bonds in one safe room, customer files and deposit cards in another, personnel files and photographs in the third.

As to the fourth and largest two-storied safe room-named the Mecidiye safe room, after the silver coins that were stored here-it is entirely devoted to the role of the Ottoman Bank as a bank of issue, displaying Tahsin İsbiroğlu's unique collection of banknotes issued by this institution, as well as proofs, specimens, numbering books and other documents relating to this aspect of the bank's operations.

The computer screens at the end of the main exhibit hall offer visitors the possibility of making their own interactive visit into the material displayed in the museum. Again based on alternative thematic and chronological flows, this virtual tour of the archives displays the major trends and events in the bank's history, and provides detailed information on the political, economic, and social context of the time, down to individual careers and life stories. Each case is illustrated by a number of photographs and documents, all of them translated both into modern Turkish and English.

Almost all of the documents displayed in the museum originate from the bank's archives, the richest private archival source in Turkey. Additional documents-especially photographs-have been obtained from private collections and other sources in order to provide a livelier illustration of the bank's own documentation. The result is a series of snapshots from a century ago which, beyond the history of the bank itself, can be read as a narrative of the fascinating period of late Ottoman and Republican history. The Ottoman Bank Museum aims to be more than just a museum of banking and to provide awareness of a much wider context of social history.

Founded in March 1997 by the Ottoman Bank, in collaboration with the History Foundation (Tarih Vakfı), the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre has been pursuing its activities in the former head office of the Ottoman Bank in Karaköy, since the end of 1999. Apart from its core endeavor, the classification of the Ottoman Bank archives, the centre has undertaken a number of projects up to now, including research related to oral history, publications, exhibitions, a documentary, a colloquium and a competition.

The Ottoman Bank (Turkish: Osmanlı Bankası) (formerly Imperial Ottoman Bank, Ottoman Turkish: Bank-ı Osmani-i Şahane) was founded in 1856 in the Galata business section of İstanbul, the capital of the Ottoman Empire, as a joint venture between British interests, the Banque de Paris et des Pays-Bas of France, and the Ottoman government. It operated as the Imperial Ottoman Bank from 1863 to 1924. Privileged as a state bank, it carried out the functions of a central bank.

In 2001, the Ottoman Bank became part of the Garanti Bank and now, the building is house to SALT Galata and has been organized to enable a challenging, multi-layered program that includes SALT Research, which offers public access to thousands of print and digital resources; a 219-capacity Auditorium; the renovated Ottoman Bank Museum; Workshop spaces; an Open Archive where archival research projects are interpreted and discussed; a temporary exhibition space; as well as a Café, Restaurant and Bookstore.

A monumental building which has lost its original form long ago within the urban texture of Galata, although it has been known as the Ottoman Bank for a time period over a century, perceived to be a single building, actually has been designed as the headquarters of two different institutions. Ottoman Empire Tobacco Regime Company and the Ottoman Bank.

In late 1880s, part of a large lot on Voyvoda Street purchased by Tobacco Regime was transferred to the Bank. The famed Levantine architect of the period, Alexandre Vallaury, was given the task of designing a contemporary grandiose structure. The design dilemma in construction displays radical differences as if two different architects designed two totally different buildings at different times looking at the façades on Voyvoda Street and the Golden Horn.

The Voyvoda Street façade has been designed with dimensions ordered in proportion and construction patterns in line with the classical or neo-classical architectural design rules. The design of Vallaury reflects the uniformity of the 19th century banks which have become a trend at the time.

The broad eave supported by long iron rods on the side façades (non-existent today) is the dominant element of the Golden Horn façade, too. On this façade, the eave turns the corners, is cut off in the middles and is equipped with other elements introducing an exceptional movement to the above floors. Vallaury, with the concern of relatively mitigating the predominance of a giant mass within the urban mosaic of Galata where still large and small wooden buildings were prominent those years, has scattered details reminiscent of traditional homes on the upper floor. There are three small kiosks in the building; one of them in the middle, two at the corners.

These two buildings used by the Ottoman Bank and the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey are the two best-documented buildings located on voyvoda
Street in İstanbul. The Project was entrusted to the architect, Alexandre vallaury, and construction of the twin buildings was completed by 1892. Today, it is the bank's Karaköy branch and hosts the Ottoman Bank Banking and fınancial History Research and Documentation Ccntre.

The neighboring twin building of the Tobacco Regie Administration was the headquarters of the Regie until June of 1925, when all Regie propcrty, including its head Office, was seized by the government of the Republic of Turkey. The building was then transferred to the newly established State Tobacco Monoply, and in 1933, to the State Monopolies. It was purchased from the State Monopolies by the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey in 1934, and has served as the İstanbul branch of the Central Bank ever since.

One of the most striking characteristics of these buildings is that their façade facing Beyoğlu-Pera is in the neoclassical style, while their rear façade, facing the Golden Horrn and old İstanbul shows orientalist elements. Vallaury was us ing architectural language to express the East-West dualism of these two institutions.

The site, conceived for twin buildings functionning with the Turkish Tobacco Monopoly, was bought in 1889 by the last-mentioned company. Two months later, the General Directorate of the Imperial Ottoman Bank, obtaining its share in the site, decided the construction of a new building, intended for its own use, and which would serve as head office. The General Manager of the Bank, Sir Edgar Vincent, writing on 7th February 1890 a letter to Thédore Berger, member of Paris Committee, suggested him to buy the half of the site for the construction of a new branch. On 13th February 1890, the approval of the Paris and London Committees was received.

French Levantine architect Alexandre Vallaury designed the original building to house the Ottoman Bank as inaugurated in 1892. The building is a landmark unique to İstanbul with surprisingly distinct architectural styles - neoclassical and oriental - applied on opposite facades. With this building, Vallaury has proven how important a design issue the diligence is to be exercised on the single building scale and aesthetics in maintaining the urban identity.

The building, constructed by the Architect Alexandre Vallauri, was composed, in the basement by vaults, stock rooms and stables; In the level under the ground floor, by the Mecidiye safe-room, so called because of coins of 20 piasters worth, which they contain at that time and by dining-hall; on the ground floor by the space reserved to the branch; on the first floor, apart from the private and professional offices of the General Manager, by the offices of his secretary and that of the translators; on the second floor, by the accounting department with the offices of the chief accountant, the state commissioner and the inspectors; in the attic, by the victuals department, archives and housekeepers' rooms.

The most interesting characteristic of the building is the difference of architectural style remarkable in its back and front façades. The neo-classical and neo-renaissance features of the front façade, looking out onto the Banks Street, reflect the glory and the dignity of European banks at the time. The back façade, looking out onto the old Istanbul beyond the Golden Horn, is notable for its nearly orientalist characteristics. This difference among the two façades seems to symbolize in fact the status of the Bank between East and West. A similitude is remarkable in the inscriptions located face to face at the entrance of the Bank. The one in Latin emphasizes the importance of the friendship while the other in Arabic exalts the fortune.

At the time of its establishment in 1856, the Ottoman Bank was a modest, private British bank trying to find a niche in the still underdeveloped Ottoman financial market. Unable to open more than a handful of branches in the competitive scene of local bankers and moneychangers, the Ottoman Bank, still managed to expand its activity by engaging in a number of financial operations and loans undertaken by the Ottoman state.

Following a disastrous experiment with paper money, the Ottoman government sought the establishment of a bank of issue, which was finalized in 1862, with the Ottoman Bank outrunning all of its rivals in obtaining this privilege. Strengthened by the addition of French capital, the Ottoman Bank became the Imperial Ottoman Bank, marking the beginning of a durable and successful career as a state bank. However, the effort of issuing banknotes, organizing foreign loans and making advance payments to the government delayed the bank’s plans of developing its commercial functions.

The Foundation of the Ottoman Bank 1856
In 1855, two British entrepreneurs, Stephen Sleigh and Peter Pasquali, conceived a plan to establish an "Ottoman Bank". The following year, the bank received its royal charter from Queen Victoria and started its operations in Istanbul. In a modest way, the new bank partly responded to the wishes expressed by Sultan Abdülmecid in the 1856 Reform Edict - which supported the Tanzimat reform movement - by playing an increasing role in the financing of the state. By 1862, the Ottoman Bank had doubled its capital, and clearly led the race among groups competing for the status of a state bank.

The Withdrawal of Kaimes
One of the main obstacles that stood in the way of financial stability in the empire was the issue of kaimes (non-backed paper currency), adopted by the government to finance budget deficits. Although, this paper money had been issued with the promise of maintaining its parity with gold, it rapidly depreciated, driving gold and silver away from the market, while causing enormous losses to its bearers.

Consequently, a withdrawal of kaimes begun in 1862. They were redeemed in exchange of 40% cash and 60% treasury bonds, thus bringing some stability to the financial market. Behind this success stood the French financial expert, Marquis de Plœuc, but also the Ottoman Bank, which had secured a loan from London, in the amount of £8,000,000, in order to finance the withdrawal operation.

The Foundation of the Imperial Ottoman Bank
After the accession of Sultan Abdülaziz to the throne in 1861, efforts towards the creation of an Ottoman state bank gained momentum. A large number of local and foreign groups and individuals eagerly sought to obtain this concession, but the Ottoman government had a marked preference for the Ottoman Bank, whose services it had appreciated for the past six years. The only concern of the leading statesman of the time, Fuad Pasha, was to avoid surrendering this crucial concession to British capital alone. The government, thus, imposed the accretion of French capital. The result of this compromise was the creation of the Imperial Ottoman Bank, whose operations began in June 1863.

The First Ottoman Bank Banknotes
Immediately after its establishment in 1863, the Ottoman Bank decided to make use of the privilege of issue it had been granted by articles nine and twelve of its act of concession. Contrary to the kaimes, which had a disruptive effect on the monetary system of the Empire, the banknotes issued by the Ottoman Bank were convertible to gold and could be presented at any moment for redemption.

Therefore, the bank was bound to keep a gold reserve equal to at least one-third of its total issue. The first designs for the bank's first 200-piastre banknote were realized in June 1863, and the first banknotes were effectively issued in three days beginning on 16 November. This first issue was very modest and totaled a mere 14,996 banknotes representing the sum of 29,992 liras. Between 1864 and 1869, another 33,000 banknotes (66,000 liras) were issued in Izmir.

Two-and Five-Lira Banknotes
On 7 May 1868, the Ottoman Bank withdrew all 200-piastre banknotes it had issued in Istanbul, and introduced 10,000 new five-lira banknotes amounting to 50,000 liras. This banknote had in fact been designed much earlier and proofs had already been printed in various colors. The new banknote was well received by the public, and encouraged by this success, the bank issued another 30,000 banknotes (150,000 liras) in the following year. Another banknote had also been issued in that same year, with a design identical to that of the five-lira note, but with a value of two liras. The bank's total issue rose to over 300,000 liras with this last issue of 20,000 two-lira notes.


WEB SITE : Ottoman Bank Museum

E-Mail :
Phone : +90 212 334 2200

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, July 22, 2017


Eminönü, Fatih - İstanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°01'02.4"N 28°57'58.6"E / 41.017319, 28.966288

Hilyei Serif And Prayer Beads Museum photo beads_museum116.jpg


The museum would serve an important function in displaying Hilye-i Şerif and prayer beads, our traditional art forms. The museum, established in the newly-restored Siyavuşpaşa Madrasah.

A revered form of calligraphy hailed as “a portrait of words,” the hilye - which derives from the Arabic word “hilyah,” meaning ornament, countenance or character - is often interpreted as a portrayal of the Prophet.

The negative attitudes in Islam toward figurative art and idolatry led to calligraphy becoming a major form of artistic expression in Islamic cultures. Characterized by paneled structures featuring the main text of the description of the Prophet in a circular central medallion surrounded by various smaller rectangular or circular panels, the Hilye-i Şerif is considered the best example of devotion to God in Islamic art after the Holy Quran.

Distinguished by dazzling color and elegant swirls of sweeping calligraphy, the hilye - which is cited as an instrument for establishing intimacy with the spirit of the Prophet and a symbol of protection, peace and blessing for a house, traveler or person in need - is omnipresent in Turkey.

The world Hilye means "decoration" or "ornamentation" but in constructions such as Hilye-i Şerife (Noble Hilye), Hilye-i Saâdet (Felicitous Hilye) and Hilye-i Nebevîye (Prophetic Hilye), the term acquired another, distinct denotation.

The description of the Prophet was, for many years, writtenin small scale with naskh script for carrying in one's breast pocket as a token of homage; at the hand of the calligraphic genius Hâfız Osman Efendi (1052-1110 AH/1642-1698 CE), this text was re-presented in a new and admirable graphic arrangement.

The earliest examples of this new composition appeared from 1090 AH/1679-1680 CE onward, and they most often contained the account of the Prophet's appearance and character transmitted by the Caliph 'Ali.

Siyavuş Paşa's Madrasah was established back in the 17th century and in today's world it means a high school and a university. In Ottoman times, that was what it was used for. After the Republic, it became a location used for pottery works. It is right behind the Süleymaniye Mosque. There are usually artisans hanging around here. After the 1950s this place was left to rot.


WEB SITE : Hilye-i Serif and Prayer Beads Museum

Phone : +90 212 512 1232
Fax : +90 212 512 1241

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.


Sirkeci, Fatih - İstanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°00'52.5"N 28°58'27.0"E / 41.014597, 28.974174

Istanbul PTT Museum photo ptt_museum139.jpg


The first Post-Office was opened under the name of “Postahane-i Amire” (Department of Post Office) at the courtyard of Yeni Camii (Mosque) in İstanbul, and the first officials, Süleyman Ağa, collector Sofyalı Ağyazar were appointed as translators in order to translate the addresses of postal items written in languages other than Turkish.

In 1871, the Ministry of Post and the Directorate of Telegraph were united under the name of Ministry of Post and Telegraph. In 1876 international postal transportation network had been established, and in 1901, acceptance of parcel and money order was started to be accepted. After the establishment of the first manual telephone exchange in İstanbul on 23 May 1909, the Ministry of Post and Telegraph was turned into the Ministry of Post, Telegraph and Telephone in 1909 and it took the name of the General Directorate of Post, Telegraph and Telephone in 1913.

The General Directorate of PTT which had served as subordinate to the Ministry of Internal Affairs in the early years of our Republic, became subordinate to the Ministry of Public Works as an annexed budget administration in 1933, and since 1939 has been carrying out its services as subordinate to the Ministry of Transportation.

As the result of the developments that have been experienced with the Firman of Reform, the first Postal Organization was established as the Ministry on 23 October 1840, for the purpose of satisfying the postal needs of the whole community of the Ottoman Empire and foreigners. 11 years later, following the invention of telegraph in 1843, telegraph service had been started also in our country, and a separate Directorate of Telegraph had been established in 1855 in order to provide this service.

Although we all have occasion to pass through Istanbul’s Sirkeci district from time to time, there is one place we rarely notice in the hubbub of everyday life: the Great Post Office. This historic four-story structure, which was built a hundred years ago as the Ministry of Post and Telegraph, hosts an important museum today, the PTT Museum, where the history of communications and telecommunications in Turkey from the Ottoman period to the Turkish Republic is laid out for all to see.


1840 The Ministry of Post was established
1855 Directorate of Telegraph was established
1871 The Ministry of Post and The Directorate of Telegraph where merged
1901 Money order transactions were started to be accepted
1909 After the commencement of the telephone services, the institution was turned into the Ministry of Post, Telegraph and Telephone
1939 As being the General Directorate of PTT, it was bounded to The Ministry of Transportation
1984 It was transferred into the status of State Economic Establishment
1995 The General Directorate of PTT was restructured as The General Directorate of Posts and Turkish Telecommunication Coop. Automation was started for money order and postal cheque transactions
1999 Cooperation was started with Garanti Bank (Korfezbank) for collection transactions
2000 The name of the legal entity, The General Directorate of Posts  was changed into The General Directorate of Post and Telegraph Organization.
2004 PTTBank’s name was registered officially.

As the result of the developments that have been experienced with the Firman of Reform, the first Postal Organization was established as the Ministry on 23 October 1840, for the purpose of satisfying the postal needs of the whole community of the Ottoman Empire and of foreigners. The first Post-Office was opened under the name of "Postahane-I Amire" ( Department of Post-Office) at the courtyard of Yeni Camii (Mosque) in İstanbul, and the first officials, Süleyman Ağa, collector Sofyalı Ağyazar were appointed as translators in order to translate the addresses of postal items written in languages other than Turkish.

11 years later, following the invention of telegraph in 1843, telgraph service had been started also in our country, and a separate Directorate of Telegraph had been established in 1855 in order to provide this service. In 1871, the Ministry of Post and the Directorate of Telegraph where united under the name of Ministry of Post and Telegraph. In 1876 international postal transportation network had been established, and in 1901, parcel and money order were started to be accepted.

After the establishment of the first manual telephone exchange in Istanbul on 23 May 1909, the Ministry of Post and Telegraph was turned into the Ministry of Post, Telegraph and Telephone in 1909 and it took the name of the General Directorate of Post, Telegraph and Telephone  in 1913. The General Directorate of PTT which had served as subordinate to the Ministry of Internal Affairs in the early years of our Republic, became subordinate to the  Ministry of Public Works an Settlement as an annexed budget administration in 1933, and since 1939 has been carrying out its services as subordinate to the Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications.

General Directorate of PTT, which became a State Economic Enterprise (SEE) in 1954, has been transferred into the status of the State Economic Establishment (SEE) by the Decree Law No. 233 on Reorganization of the State Enterprises in 1984. By the Law dated 18.06.1994 and No. 4000,  the General Directorate of PTT was restructured and divided into two as, the General Directorate of Posts and Turk Telecom Coop. , and the General Directorate of Posts  started to give service  independently since 24.04.1995.

The name of Our Administration which had been "The General Directorate of Posts" was amended as "The General Directorate of  Post and Telegraph Organization  (PTT) " under the Article 24 of the Law No.4502, which  entered into force by being published in the Official Newspaper numbered 23948, dated 29.01.2000.


The PTT (Post - Telephone - Telegram company) museum in Istanbul is located inside the historic building of main post office at Sirkeci neighborhood. It houses several old phone units, telegram machines, first stamp from 1863 and other late Ottoman or early Republic period stamps, old seals and mail boxes, postal clerk uniforms, and some photos of the first communication systems in Turkey. From the ancestors of the cell phone to the original telexes, all the ‘firsts’ of communications in Turkey are on display at the PTT Museum in Istanbul Sirkeci.

Museum Building
The Main Post Office (Turkish: Büyük Postane), which houses the museum, is a historical four-story building designed by architect Vedat Tek (1873–1942) in First Turkish National architectural style. It was constructed between 1905 and 1909 during the last period of the Ottoman Empire as the building of the Ministry of Post and Telegraph (Ottoman Turkish: Posta ve Telgraf Nezareti‎). Later, it was turned into a post office.

The museum has a separate entrance and occupies four stories in the western part of the building. It informs visitors about the country's history of communication and telecommunication services that officially began on October 23, 1840 with the foundation of the Ottoman Ministry of Post (Ottoman Turkish: Posta Nezareti‎). Established on May 6, 2000 by the Turkish Post, the museum consists of four sections for mail, telegraph, telephone and postage stamps. Photos taken during the construction of the building are also on exhibit.

The museum is divided into four sections: post, telegraph, telephone and stamps. And the first people that come to mind at the mention of the postal service are on hand to greet us at the entrance. Our acquaintance with them dates back to childhood. Indeed, we even sang a song about them in primary school: “Look, the postman is coming!” From the mounted couriers who carried the mail in the 19th century to the postmen who took over the same function in the Constitutional and Republican periods, they stand here attired in the uniforms of their time.

And then the vast array of mailboxes. The painstakingly fashioned contemporaries of the first stamps, issued in 1863, and the later, sturdier ones in whose design aesthetics played little role. Among them, one painted red and standing in the corner grabs our attention. It bears an inscription, ‘Bucharest Mail Box Ottoman Field Post (1914)’. Field boxes were used for communications between soldiers marching off to the front and their friends and relatives back home. Who knows what yearnings were stanched by these desert mailboxes which, in the beginning at least, required no stamps but for which special stamps were later issued.

Another object that catches our attention in this section is a war scene from the Ottoman period depicting the allied troops, Turks also among them, entering Sebastopol in 1855 following their victory in the Crimean War. The painting is included here for its direct link with the first telegram ever sent in the Ottoman Empire, which was dispatched from Şumnu to Istanbul following completion of the Istanbul-Edirne and Istanbul-Şumnu lines. Reporting on the Crimean War, the telegram read: "Allied troops enter Sebastopol".

Now we are on the top floor. Opening the door of a room, Museum Supervisor turns to us. “This was the office of Manastırlı Hamdi Bey”, she says, “preserved unchanged from his day”. For those who don’t know, let us hasten to explain that Hamdi Bey of Manastır (in Ottoman Macedonia) was the man who had the bitter task of informing Mustafa Kemal (Atatürk) of the occupation of Istanbul on the morning of 16 March 1920.

Blow by blow he relayed to Ankara an account of the occupation of the War Ministry and the situation in Istanbul, continuing to send his dispatches even as trucks carrying enemy troops were drawing up in front of the Great Post Office. Only when the first enemy soldier actually entered the building was the transmission interrupted. The instrument that conveyed that grim news stands here still, together with Manastırlı Hamdi Bey’s desk and chair. And on the wall a photograph of him, with a smile on his lips, follows us from beyond time.

Have you ever heard of a postage stamp printed on cigarette paper? Well, we never did either until we came here. The first Turkish stamp, issued by Minister of the Post Agâh Efendi on 13 January 1863, was printed at the Ottoman Imperial Mint on thin cigarette paper. Also in a section on this floor are exhibits of all the Turkish stamps issued from that period up to the present as well as issues by member countries of the Universal Postal Union.

On the second floor of the museum are the telephones that can be regarded as the ancestors of today’s highly sophisticated mobiles. Magneto- or battery-powered, dial and non-dial, in both wall and desk models. Among this rare collection is an exact replica of the original telephone made by Alexander Graham Bell in 1882, a gift of the Alcatel-Bell firm on the 150th anniversary of the founding of the PTT. By adding a dial, PTT technicians have adapted it for use today.

Although the telephone was first introduced in Istanbul during the period of Sultan Abdülhamid II, it came into widespread use only following the promulgation of the Second Constitution in 1908. Nevertheless, since these first telephones were not automatic, communications were only possible via a "santral" or central switchboard. At the outset it was to be operated by Istanbul’s so-called "mademoiselles", in other words, girls from the city’s Greek, Armenian and Jewish minorities.

But since most of these girls spoke heavily accented Turkish, this plan soon had to be abondoned owing to customer dissatisfaction. Introducing the principle of "speaking with an Istanbul accent on Istanbul telephones", the company laid down the condition that applicants for the job of switchboard operator must have pleasant voices. Since the city’s female inhabitants were reluctant to expose themselves publicly in this way, recourse was had from time to time to the many foreign-run schools in the city. In 1914, for example, an examination was held at the French Girls’ Lycée in Kadıköy.

Among those who passed was Bedia (Muvahhit) Hanım, who would subsequently claim the title of first great actress of the Turkish stage. Until she embarked on her career in the theater, Bedia Hanım’s melodic voice could be heard answering callers at the Beyoğlu switchboard. The invisible and mysterious bond that formed between the switchboard operators and the telephone subscribers lasted until the introduction of the first automatic telephones in 1931.

During this process, telephones came down from the wall onto the desk, their dimensions diminished, and aesthetics began to take precedence in their design. It was therefore a bittersweet pleasure that was enjoyed by the residents of the city’s European side when the first "unmediated" (without the intervention of a switchboard operator) calls became possible on the night of 29 October 1931. Subscribers felt as if they had suddenly lost a friend.

Our guide takes us into another gallery where she points out three tiny figures: the "postal couriers". Couriers were the men who carried the official documents sent from the Imperial Court in Istanbul to the authorities in the provinces. Dressed in special uniforms, they were carefully selected from among the most trusted and strongest men and the best riders. If their destination was a distant place, they changed mounts at posting stations known as "menzilhane".

Their journeys took them through some of the most isolated and untraveled regions of the empire. Galloping over hill and dale, at times they even bore arms against the threat of bandits and wild animals. Some sources also state that news of the great Ottoman military victories at Kosovo and Çaldıran were brought back to Istanbul by such couriers.

There is much more to be seen and described at the PTT Museum. Couriers’ uniforms, weapons, the switchboards where the mademoiselles were employed, teletypewriters and the original telexes, to name just a few. Open every day from Monday through Friday, the museum is waiting for you to take a stroll down memory lane. For you will certainly find there numerous reminders of your lost childhood and youth.

The Istanbul Postal Museum, aka PTT Museum Istanbul (Turkish: PTT İstanbul Müzesi), is a postal museum dedicated to the historical development of mail and telecommunication services in the Ottoman Empire and Turkey, exhibiting related equipment and instruments as well as a collection of postage stamps. It was established in 2000 by the Turkish Post, and is situated inside the Grand Post Office building at Sirkeci quarter of Fatih district in Istanbul, Turkey.

Examples of various uniforms worn by military couriers and mail carriers from the Constitutional era in the beginning of the 20th century and from the Republican era after 1923 to present time can be seen fitted on dolls and mannequins. Historical postal service items like mail satchels, mail pouches, mail sacks, letter boxes, locator maps, franking machines from the Ottoman and Republican era are on display.

An inscription plate of the first telegraph office shows the year 1855. A painting depicting a battle scene from the Crimean War (1853–1856) affiliates with the first use of telegraphy in the Ottoman Empire on September 9, 1855. A telegraph was dispatched from Shumen (Bulgaria, then Ottoman Empire) to the capital Istanbul relayed in Edirne. The message reads "Allied troops entered Sevastopol." (Ottoman Turkish: Asâkir-i müttefika Sivastopol'a girmişlerdir.‎) to report the victory of the Allied troops, along with the Ottomans, ending the Siege of Sevastopol (1854–1855) during the Crimean War.

On the third floor, the telegraphy room of clerk Hamdi Bey of Monastır (today Bitola in the Republic of Macedonia) is preserved unchanged from those days with all the historical equipment. He was in charge when the Allied troops of World War I (1914–1918) occupied Istanbul on March 16, 1920 following the Armistice of Mudros. He sent messages to Mustafa Kemal (Atatürk) in Ankara using Morse telegraph about the situation in Istanbul until he was stopped by the enemy soldiers, who entered the post office building.

Later period's teletypewriters and an original telex machine is on exhibit as well.

The second floor hosts various early telephone instruments and related equipment. There are telephones with hand-cranked magneto generator or battery-powered, rotary dial and pushbutton dial telephones in both wall and desk versions, also produced in Turkish PTT factories, telephone switchboards, elektromechanical automatic telephone exchanges.

Also an exact replica of Alexander Graham Bell's (1842–1922) original telephone from 1882 is exhibited here. It was a gift from Alcatel-Lucent company in 1990 on the 150th anniversary of Turkish Post's establishment. An example of telephone switchboard can be seen, which enabled to manually connect telephone subscribers. The installation of the first elektromechanical automatic telephone exchange in Turkey was accomplished on October 23, 1931 making the switchboard operators superfluous.

Postage stamps
The first Turkish postage stamp was issued by Post Minister Agah Efendi (1832–1885) on January 13, 1863. It was printed at the Ottoman Imperial Mint on thin cigarette paper. Postage stamp issues of Universal Postal Union's member countries are also on display along with the stamps of the Ottoman and Republican era as well as first day covers issued after the 1950s.


WEB SITE : İstanbul PTT Museum

Phone : +90 212 520 9037 / +90 444 1788

These scripts and photographs are registered under © Copyright 2017, respected writers and photographers from the internet. All Rights Reserved.