Thursday, 27 June 2013

Tour de Mosques

Tour de Three of them anyway. There are almost 3,000 of them in Istanbul. In comparison, Rome, which I think has a whole lot of churches, has merely 900. Or is comparing churches to Mosques an apples to oranges kind of thing? WED_1146 WED_1127

I was really happy that they allow you to go into the mosques here. As long as you are decently dressed- if not, they would make you wear a robe of shame. Even the men. If you were showing your knees, they'd put you in a sarong.


They don't let you choose either, so not only do you have to wear a "scarf of shame", and you might end up wearing contrasting prints. The horror!

There were some enormous Mosques in this town and the interiors were gorgeous.

Süleymaniye Mosque

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The views from here in the afternoon light were spectacular.

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Right off the Spice Bazaar is the smaller Rüstem Pasha Mosque. It is completely plastered with exquisite Iznik tiles- hand painted lovelies that I had come to covet this trip.


Once again, my future garden is in want of some decor.


All the repeating motifs of flowers and fruit and nature. I loved them. By the way, they are very expensive. While you can get factory made printed ones at any shop in Turkey for a few bucks, the handpainted, handglazed ones will run you about $50-$75 UDS per tile, or more if it's a big, intricate design. Let's not even talk about the antique ones. Most of these tiles in the Mosque were hundreds of years old, and they still looked vibrant and new.


The Louvre in Paris just opened up a huge Islamic art wing. They are claiming to have quite the Iznik collection. I don't know if I should be running off to see them or weeping in jealousy.

Tucked into all the mosaics of the plants and flowers and there was one tile that showed Istanbul back in the day:


Then, a trip down the street to the New Mosque, which was actually quite was built, destroyed and rebuilt a few times before it was finally completed in 1665. So new, it's old again.

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