Cihangir Mosque is the pearl of the Cihangir district and its unequaled view enchants the people who visit here. The four-hundred year-old magnificence of this mosque is complemented by the beauty of Istanbul and the Bosphorus, which we can see from the courtyard. Cihangir is an enchanting, proud, and intellectual district of Istanbul, well aware of its beauty. The Cihangir Mosque is placed in the most beautiful spot where the land meets the sea. Although it is in the center of Istanbul, people who live outside the district are unaware of this mosque, and thus it gives the impression of a serendipitous jewel. The fame of the mosque is spread by those who have visited it and beheld the picturesque view. Once having entered the courtyard of the mosque, which resembles an imprerial garden, it is diffucult to leave without getting one’s fill of the Bosphorus. The mosque is courtyard are open from the morning prayer at the break of dawn until the last prayer at night. The mosque, like all mosques in Istanbul, has a unique history; it was constructed between 1559 and 1560, was rebuilt on the orders of Sultan Abdulhamid II after being damaged by fire. The niche, pulpit and the sultan’s gallery are made of wood and are pleasing to the eye. The thirty-nine pleques which embellish the interior of the mosque date back to between 1868 and 1890. They were made by the most renowned Ottoman calligraphers, such as Hafiz, Sami, Rakım, Şevki, Hasan, Rıza, Sabri, Şefik, Muhammed Fehmi, Mehmed Tahir, Arif, and Seyyid Ali. The architectural style of the mosque is smilar to that of Mihrimah Sultan Mosque in Edirnekapı, which was built by Mimar Sinan. In the tomb of the mosque there are twenty-eight graves, one of which is that of Seikh Hasan Burhaneddin Cihangir of the Khalwalti Order.
In the Vicinity of Cihangir Mosque
Yeraltı (Underground) Mosque
Astaircase leads us down a few steps into the mosque. The interior of the msque is unique. This is not surprising as the original building was constructed as a mosque. The Yeraltı Mosque, also known by the name of Kurşunlu Mahzen (Lead Cellar), was actually a prison during the Byzantine period. Tradition has it the colossal chain used to blockade ships from entering the Golden Horn was anchored here. The Umayyad Empire laid siege to the Byzantines several times with no success. On the of these occasions after seven days of fighting, the Umayyad troops returned to Damascus. Before doing this, the commander in chief, Maslama, put some weapons into to this dungeon and closed all the doors by covering them with moltem lead. The dungeon was turned into a mosque by one of the leading officials under Sultan Ahmed III, Mustafa Behir Pasha of Çorlu, in 1725. The graves of the Compenions of the Prophet that are inside the dungeon were a very important factor in the decision to turn this structure into a mosque.