Thursday, November 23, 2017


Sultanahmet, Fatih - Istanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°00'47.1"N 28°59'07.4"E / 41.013076, 28.985388

Third Courtyard



It is one of the first structures constructed by Fatih Sultan Mehmed in 1962-63 to form the plan of Topkapı Palace. This structure has also quadruple arrangement like the other structures at the Palace. It is formed by the connection of the other open room at Bosphorus side via a marmite terrace to the three rooms overlooking the Marmara Sea. The villas, solid walls and two big vaulted storehouses, and another storehouse from Byzantine Empire consist of the main walls of inner palace.

The Conqueror's Pavillon, also called the Conqueror's Kiosk (Fatih Köşkü) and the arcade of the pavilion in front is one of the pavilions built under Sultan Mehmed II and one of the oldest buildings inside the palace. It was built circa in 1460, when the palace was first constructed, and was also used to store works of art and treasure. It houses the Imperial Treasury (Hazine-i Amire).

The pavilion originally consisted of three rooms, a terrace overlooking the Sea of Marmara, a basement and adjoining hamam, or Turkish bath. It consists of two floors raised on a terrace above the garden, built at the top of promontory on a cliff with a magnificent view from its porch on the Sea of Marmara and the Bosporus. It has a quad venue layout such as the other Sultan’s pavilions inside the Palace.

The lower floor consisted of service rooms, while the upper floor was a suite of four apartments and a large loggia with double arches. The first two rooms are covered with a dome of considerable height. All the rooms open onto the Third Courtyard through a monumental arcade. The colonnaded portico on the side of the garden is connected to each of the four halls by a door of imposing height. The capitals of the imposing capitals are shrunken Ionic in form and date probably from the 18th century.

The pavilion was used as the treasury for the revenues from Egypt under Sultan Selim I. Before this period, under Sultan Mehmed II and Sultan Bayezid II, these apartments must have been the most agreeable rooms in the palace. During excavations in the basement, a small Byzantine baptistery built along a trefoil plan was found.

Sultan Mahmut I (18th century) added Elçi Hazinesi (Treasury of Ambassador) to the treasury portico, the portico and the terrace parts of which was closed by walls in Yavuz Sultan Selim's period. In 19th century, the villa to which French style vitrines were added in order to be displayed for important visitors became one of the early examples of Turkish Museum.

The Fatih Pavilion bears the specific features of imperial architecture, with its spacious rooms, its terrace in iwan appearance, its vestibule with portico, its high gate behind a couple of porphyry columns, the deep windows and niches in its walls and its magnificent fireplace. The Conqueror’s Pavilion is the cut-stone monumental application of the traditional form of home with outer hall.

The building’s massive walls and two vaulted cellars are supported by a sub-structure covering a small Byzantine baptistery built along a trefoil plan, found during excavations in the basement. The structure which had originally wooden ceilings and was covered with lead-coated roofing was renovated during the 16th Century to acquire its present appearance.

The Conqueror’s Pavilion which Fatih Sultan Mehmet had initially built as a contemplation lodge soon turned out to become a place where the items of the treasury were conserved. As the treasure was substantially enriched following the Egyptian expedition of Yavuz Sultan Selim, terraces and porches were closed through walls in order to protect the highly valuable objects.

During the reign of Sultan Mahmut I (1730-1754) the green porphyry columns in front of the main door were immured so as to create a new space called Ambassadorial Treasure (Elçi Hazinesi). Thus, the Pavilion’s monumental portal and its whole façade facing the Third Courtyard were closed with doors and windows.

Furthermore, a jewellery workshop was added onto the building in 1766 for the on-site repair of the valuable articles in the Treasury Chamber collection. All of these additions were finally removed in subsequent periods restoring the building to its 16th Century appearance.

The Building, today used as Treasury Section (Hazine Seksiyonu), was restored in 2000 and renewed by replacing new earthquake-resistant, modern vitrines.


WEB SITE : Topkapı Palace Museum Directorate

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Phone : +90 212 512 0480
Fax : +90 212 526 9840

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