Sehzade (Prince’s) Mosque

Front view of the Sehzade mosque

Front view of the Sehzade mosque

The Sehzade Mosque (Turkish: Şehzade Cami) is an Ottoman era mosque located in the Fatih district, on the third hill of Istanbul. Sulayman the Magnificent commissioned the mosque to commemorate his favourite son Şehzade Mehmed, who died aged only 21. It is sometimes referred to as the ‘Prince’s Mosque’.

  • Mehmed was the eldest of Sulayman’s sons by his wife Hurrem, more commonly known as Roxelana. His exact cause of death is unknown, some are of the opinion he died from smallpox while others believe he was actually murdered.
  • The Sehzade Mosque was the architect Sinan’s first major imperial commission. He completed it in 1548 CE and is regarded as the best work of his apprenticeship.
Courtyard of the Sehzade mosque

Courtyard of the Sehzade mosque

  • The forecourt has an area equal to that of the mosque itself. The ablution space (known as a şadırvan) in the centre was donated from Sultan Murat IV.
  • The mosque interior is square based upon which rests a large central dome flanked by four half domes and numerous smaller domes. A bomb blast in central Istanbul in 2016 resulted in many of the windows being shattered.
Ceiling detailn in the Sehzade mosque

Ceiling detailn in the Sehzade mosque

  • Apart from the mosque, the complex consists of the mausoleum of Prince Mehmed, two madrasahs, a public kitchen and a travellers inn (caravansarai). The prince’s only daughter Hümaşah and his youngest brother Cihangir are also buried here.
    Mehrab and mimbar of the Sehzade mosque

    Mehrab and mimbar of the Sehzade mosque


    References: The Rough Guide to Istanbul, Wikipedia

    Location map:

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