Bursa's Green Mosque
Bursa - the fourth largest city in Turkey after Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir - is considered one of the most beautiful Turkish cities. Despite many wars, several devastating earthquakes and terrible fires, several interesting historical monuments still remain here. One of them is the Green Mosque, built in the 15th century at the order of Sultan Mehmed I Çelebi.
Architect Hacı İvaz Pasha started to build a mosque during lifetime of the sultan, but it was finished after Mehmed's death. It took almost 10 years to build, and in 1424 Bursa citizens saw the mosque’s halls, shining like an emerald. It sparkles because the interior walls were covered with dark blue, green, azure, turquoise and blue tiles, interspersed with white Arabic inscriptions.
The mosque has two linked domed halls. A marble pool is at the heart of the central dome.
The facade of the mosque is decorated with white marble, and the prayer hall was decorated with green faience.
Flower designs and scriptures carved in marble frame the entry and the windows, which is considered a masterpiece of Ottoman art.
The inner walls are decorated with tiles of various shades, as well as white and golden Arabic calligraphic inscriptions.
At the end of the 19th century, the mosque underwent an extensive renovation following a terrible earthquake. In addition, two minarets were rebuilt and a window above the pool was added to the central hall.
So, the Green Mosque of Bursa was luckier than its namesake in Astrakhan, built in 1831 on the initiative of Nurashi Niyazov. Since 1938, the building of the Astrakhan Green Mosque, religious activities in which were stopped, was used as a hostel and hospital. And recently, another green mosque appeared on the map of Eurasia, named like this not because of the color, but because of the use of "green" technologies - solar panels are installed on the mosque, which produce enough power not only for its needs, but also partly for the city's needs. The architects say that the temple does not violate the precepts of Islam, and such eco-friendly mosques are already being built in Arab countries.