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x0x Seaside palaces

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    [See more at: http://turkradio.us/k/saray/ ] x0x Seaside palaces By Prof. Dr. METIN AND Adorning Istanbul s shores with palaces was one of the Ottoman sultans
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 3, 2007
      [See more at: http://turkradio.us/k/saray/ ]

      x0x Seaside palaces

      By Prof. Dr. METIN AND

      Adorning Istanbul's shores with palaces was one of the
      Ottoman sultans' greatest pleasures.

      Almost all the Ottoman sultans took a close interest in
      Istanbul's shores, decking the coasts of the Sea of
      Marmara, the two shores of the Bosphorus and of the
      Golden Horn, and the banks of Kagithane Stream (the
      Sweet Waters of Europe) with pavilions and palaces
      large and small. The first such palace, and
      historically speaking the third most important palace,
      is the summer palace at Uskudar built by Sultan
      Suleyman the Magnificent in 1555, which is also
      remembered as the `Kavak Sarayi' or Poplar Tree Palace.
      Developing a preference for the European shore, the
      padishahs of subsequent centuries neglected this palace
      until Sultan Selim III had a building for troops
      erected here and the structure was converted into the
      Selimiye barracks. One feature of Kavak Sarayi was that
      it was readily accessible from Topkapi Palace by


      The two banks of the Golden Horn were also adorned with
      palaces, most of them belonging to the sultans' wives.
      The daughters, Esma, $ah, Beyhan and Hatice, of Sultan
      Mustafa III and his brother Abdulhamid I, had seaside
      mansions here in the district of Eyup. One of the main
      seaside palaces on the northern bank of the Golden Horn
      stood next to the Imperial Dockyard at
      Kasimpasa-Haskoy. Although it was called the Tersane
      Sarayi or Dockyard Palace, it is better known as the
      Aynali Kavak Sarayi or Palace of the Mirrored Poplar
      Tree. Sultan Selim I took a great interest in this
      palace, too, and Ahmed I had a pavilion constructed
      here. Sultans Mehmed IV, Ahmed III and Selim III also
      made various additions to the palace. Like a sort of
      logo of the palace, a mirror hangs over the tree at the
      extreme right-hand side of the picture from the Gaznevi
      album that we have included here, which is inscribed
      below as `Aynali Kavak', or `Poplar Tree with Mirror'.

      Cut off from the shore when the dockyard was enlarged,
      the palace today has been turned into a concert venue
      and an `Exhibition of Turkish Musical Instruments'
      following the removal here from Topkapi Palace Museum
      of instruments and visual resources donated by various
      individuals and institutions.

      Kagithane Stream, better known the Sweet Waters of
      Europe, and its shores were once Istanbul's most
      popular destination for pleasure excursions. The first
      pavilion built here was the Imrahor Kosku. But the
      area's star shone most brilliantly in the first half of
      the 18th century during the period of Ahmed III when
      French palaces and formal gardens were taken as a model
      and the palace construction was integrated with the
      nearby waters. Ahmed III and his son-in-law Grand
      Vizier Ibrahim Pasha launched a colossal building
      program, commissioning the construction of around 100
      pavilions and small palaces. Platforms were erected
      over the stream, canals and waterfalls were
      constructed, and water was collected in a marble pool.
      In an 18th century miniature found in the Istanbul
      University Library,

      we can observe in the foreground how the women
      entertained each other.

      Visible on the opposite shore is the Sa'dabad Palace,
      which had fallen into ruin due to neglect and was razed
      by Mahmud II, who had the New Sa'dabad Palace erected
      in its place. Later, Sultan Abdulaziz had this palace
      demolished and the Caglayan Palace built, a structure
      which was completely destroyed in 1940.


      Another important area of palace construction was the
      Besiktas, Ortakoy and Kurucesme area along the European
      shore of the Bosphorus.

      There were three major gardens here: Karabali,
      Dolmabahce and Besiktas. Sultan Ahmed I had the
      seven-domed Cinili Kosk or Tiled Pavilion built here as
      well, while Sultan Osman II extended the shore by
      having the sea filled in with stones, a sort of
      landfill from which the Dolmabahce, or `Filled Garden',
      takes its name. Every sultan added a building here,
      sometimes restoring an old one in situ, sometimes
      having it torn down and a new one built.

      A palace complex thus emerged consisting of a series of
      pavilions, either independent or connected by
      galleries. This development continued with the
      restoration and rebuilding of the complex by
      Antoine-Ignace Melling, a German painter-architect who,
      together with Sultan Mahmud II, played a large role in
      the construction of the important seaside palaces and
      the design of the gardens.

      We have also included an engraving by the
      master-engraver L'Espinasse showing the Be$ikta$
      Palace. Mahmud II had the building known as the Old
      CIragan palace constructed here. Later Sultan
      Abdulmecid had this palace torn down and commissioned
      in its place the building of the Dolmabahce Palace,
      which is still standing today in all its glory.


      We turn now to the Seaside Palace of Hatice Sultan,
      daughter of Sultan Mustafa III and sister of Sultan
      Selim III. When Hatice married, her uncle Sultan
      Abdulhamid I gave his niece the land at the tip of
      Defterdar Point between Ortakoy and Kurucesme. Melling
      was given the task of restoring the Nesatabad Palace
      here and constructing annexes. An intimate relationship
      developed between Hatice Sultan and Melling, who built
      the seaside palace and designed the garden for the
      princess, who preferred an independent lifestyle.
      Melling also built a small palace for Sultan Selim III
      and a harem or women's quarters for his mother, the
      Valide Sultan. We find here both western architecture
      and the style and decoration characteristic of
      traditional Turkish civilian architecture. Besides
      building the palace, Melling also designed clothes and
      furnishings for the Lady Sultan as well as painting the
      picture we have included here. Still more seaside
      palaces in this area are the Fer'iye Palaces at
      Ortakoy, so-called to indicate that they were palaces
      of secondary importance compared with the actual
      residences of the sultans. A seaside complex consisting
      of three rectangular buildings at Ortakoy, they play
      host today to the Kabatas Lycée and Galatasaray
      University. A two-storey building known as the
      Cariyeler Kogusu or Concubines' Dormitory also stands
      here among the buildings that have stood the test of

      Other seaside palaces that have survived to our day are
      the Cifte Saraylar or Double Palaces at Findikli, which
      were built by Sultan Abdulmecid's two daughters, Cemile
      and Munire. Cemile Sultan's palace was converted into
      the Academy of Fine Arts in 1926, Munire Sultan's
      palace first into the Faculty of Letters of Istanbul
      University, then Ataturk Girls' Lycée, and finally
      Cifte Saraylar Mimar Sinan University today.

      Some of these palaces have succumbed to time and are
      known only from their pictures. But others remain still
      standing in good condition. We hope that future
      generations will not be doomed to learn of them only
      from engravings and miniatures.

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