The madrasa (medrese) of Süleyman Pasa was built by Prince Süleyman Sah, son of Orhan I. It is one of the two remaining out of the eight medreses in operating in Iznik during Ottoman times. Restorations took place in the 19th century and more recently in 1968.
The madrasa is composed of eleven cells and gallery enclosing three sides of a rectangular courtyard that opens east. A classroom (dersane), with doors to the courtyard and the adjacent teacher's room, occupies the center to the west. A total of nineteen domes with terra-cotta tiles roof the classroom, the gallery and the cells in decreasing order of height. The rooms have rectangular windows to the outside enhanced with circular opening above and are equipped with fireplaces (ocak). During restorations in 1968, the building was extended on the east with lavatories added to the northern flange and an entrance gate and stairs created at the end of the southern flange, finalized with a wall enclosing the courtyard to the east. The exterior walls remain sunken partially due to the rising of the street level over centuries. The construction of the madrasa walls is roughhewn stone and brick, with the arches of the portico rendered entirely in brick and dome pendentives made of cut stone. The columns are marble and granite.
Evliya Çelebi, a 17th century Ottoman traveler, mentions a mosque, dar'ül hadis (college in advanced studies in the religious law) and dar'ül kurra (house for the readers of the Koran) as comprising the larger complex of Süleyman Pasa; none of these other buildings have survived to our day.
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