Sunday, November 11, 2018


Atikali, Fatih - İstanbul - Turkey

GPS : 41°01'25.2"N 28°56'47.0"E / 41.023667, 28.946389


It is situated in the District of Fatih, at the junction of Yavuz Selim Road and Mustakimzade Street. It was built for Mimar Sinan-i Atik who passed away in 1471. Even though it is called with the name of its benefactor, it got the name of “Kumrulu Mescid” (The Masjid with Doves) from the bird reliefs situated on the ornamental slab of the now dry fountain i located in the corner of the structure which depicts birds drink ng water out of a bowl.

Kumrulu Mescidi, takes its name from a fragment of Byzantine sculpture used in the adjoining çeşme, showing two turtledoves drinking from the Fountain of Life. This mosque is of interest principally because its founder and builder was Atik Sinan, the Chief Architect of Sultan Mehmet II and the designer of the original Mosque of the Conqueror. Atik Sinan’s tombstone is to be seen in the garden of the mosque, with an inscription which tells us that he was executed by Fatih in 1471.

The mosque was the work of a less well known Sinan, Atik Sinan (Sinaüddin Bin Yusuf), about whose life we know almost nothing. As the almost certainly apocryphal story goes, he was rewarded for his efforts by having his hands chopped off in 1471 when the sultan realized that the dome of Hagia Sophia still outstripped that of his new mosque. He was buried in the grounds of the Kumrulu Cami in nearby Karagümrük.

After the architect’s death in 1471, the same year the mosque was finished, his entire estate was donated to a mescit (small mosque), zaviye (sufi lodge) and a school that he had built in the Fatih district. His grave is in the section of the Sinan-ı Atik Mosque cemetery known as the Kumrulu Mescit. It’s a nice story but whether it’s true or not is for you to decide.

The structure, which was lastly repaired in the years 1963-64 has a plain architecture with an oblong design. Its mihrab is ornamented with encaustic tiles. it a building made of bricks and stones that has a roof covered with tiles. It has got a single minaret with a single balcony.


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