Bursa Great Mosque

Bursa Great Mosque

The Ulucami of Bursa was begun in 1396 during the reign of Bayazid I, and completed in 1399. It is a large rectangular building with the dimensions of 68 m. by 56 m. Twelve square piers divide the interior into twenty equal units, each of which is surmounted by a dome. The second dome from the main portal in the centml row is open on top. The unit below it has a pool in the centre. Its floor is finished with white marble slabs and is tower by two steps than the tloor of the prayer section. This part resembles an interior court. The domes of the Ulucami rest on pendentives and are enveloped on the exterior by octagonal drums. The centre row on the north-south axis has the highest domes; the hvo side rows diminish in height in two stages. The Ulucami of Bursa does not have a porch.

Bursa Hudavendigar Mosque

Murad I commissioned this mosque in 1365, which was completed in 1385. Hudavendigar Mosque is a typical Bursa type or inverted 'T' type of mosque with three iwans facing an inner court with a pool. This latter section is enclosed by a dome with oculus leaning on pendentives. The iwans and the six small rooms (hospices?) flanking them at the corners are all barrel vaulted. The main iwan which is raised from the ground and larger and higher than the other iwans, was used as a prayer hall. The inner court on the other hand was a kind of circulation area between the rooms and iwans. There is a five-bay porch on the entrance section that leads to a vestibule before the court.

Hudavendigar Mosque

This mosque is in fact a two-story building that comprises a madrasa on the upper level. It is like a Seljukid madrasa reversed. In Seljukid madrasas, a small masjid is usually placed in a square domed room adjacent to the entrance vestibule (compare with Gok Madrasa in Sivas). The masjid is here shifted to a more dominant place in such a way that the madrasa on the second floor is subordinated to the prayer hall. We can explain this displacement through ideological and social transformations occured in the early Ottoman world, which probably placed 'mosque' before institutions of learning. This application will later become a standard for building complexes in Istanbul, in which the monumental mosque dominates all surrounding structures.
The facade of the gallery above the porch is unique with its composition of pointed double arches framed in mouldings. There is a cornice of blind-arches on top of the facade instead of the ordinary saw-tooths. This facade has an air of a building with Gothic flavor in Greek islands, whose features can also be discerned in the architecture of some Turkish principalities that flourished in the fourteenth century, in western Anatolia (Menteseogullari is one of them). In addition to this, columns and their capitals and marble doorjambs are of Byzantine materails reused in this facade. Hence a certain Western influence is apparent on the exterior of the Hudavendigar Mosque.