Hüdavendigar Külliyesi is an imperial complex
located in the Çekirge neighborhood of Bursa, in a hilly area overlooking the
city. The complex consists of a dervish lodge (zawiye), as well as a mausoleum (türbe), soup kitchen (imaret),
bath (hammam), and a Qur’an school for boys (sibyan mektebi). The
complex is named after its patron, Ottoman sultan Murad I, whose epithet was
Hüdavendigar. Its original construction dates before 1385/787 AH, the date of
an endowment document (vakfiye) that mentions the finished complex.
Construction may have started as early as 1365-1366/767 AH. The zawiye/madrasa
building was rebuilt following the 1855 earthquake, without alteration in plan.
Successive restorations in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries have
introduced new elements such as the central fountain and the wooden gallery
The dervish lodge building is unique in the
history of Ottoman architecture as it combines two building types on two floors. It takes the form of a
two-story cube with a rectangular block protruding from the south side. It is
made of alternating courses of brick and stone. The front (north) façade is
composed of a two-story portico with five pointed arches on the first story
giving onto five domed bays. The second story features five double-arches
within a larger blind arch giving onto five domed bays.
The ground floor is the zawiye and follows traditional plans for
this type of structure: a hall and adjoining iwans that form an inverted T. A portal in the central bay of the first story of the portico leads onto a vestibule flanked
by two side rooms, followed by a second, smaller vestibule also flanked by two
side rooms. This leads onto a large domed hall with two side iwans east and west) and a larger
iwan on the qibla (south) side. The mihrab at the rear of this qibla iwan is
fit into an octagonal protrusion from the building, reminiscent of the apse of
a late Byzantine church.
Access to the second story is granted through
staircases in the thickness of the walls between the first vestibule and its
two side rooms. The stairs land on a gallery that wraps around the east, south, and west sides of
the large domed hall on the first floor, taking the shape of a U: the south, occupied by the qibla iwan on the first floor, has no gallery. Sixteen
cells accessed from this gallery line the two side walls of the building (east
and west). A larger room between the two staircases on the north side of the
gallery occupies the space over the vestibule and gives access to the veranda atop the portico. On the southern ends of the two
long arms of the gallery, passages lead to a very thin corridor tracing the perimeter
of the qibla iwan leading to a room over the mihrab. This second story, with its cells arranged about a central space, recalls the plan of a madrasa, although its original function is not clear.
The other buildings
The mausoleum was commissioned by Bayezid I after the death of his father Murad I, and is located to the south of the mosque. It is a single-unit with dome resting on double arches and Byzantine columns and houses the tombs of Murad I and seven other members of the Ottoman family.
The hamam, known with the multiple names of Bekarlar, Kimsesiz, Cikcik or Girçik Hamami, is located to the east of the mosque and consists of a single domed unit with fountain at its center. It is currently used as privy chambers for the mosque.
The boys' school has been entirely rebuilt and is currently in use as primary school. The soup kitchen (imaret) to the west of the mosque has also lost its original form.
Ayverdi, Ekrem Hakki. Osmanlı Mi‘mârîsinin Ilk Devri 630-805 (1230-1402), 231-264. Istanbul: Baha Matbaasi, 1966.
Baykal, Kâzim. Bursa ve anitlari. Istanbul: Türkiye Anit-Çevre Turizm Degerlerini Koruma Vakfi, 1982.
Gabriel, Albert. Une capitale turque, Brousse-Bursa. Paris: E. de Boccard, 1958.
Kuban, Doğan. Ottoman Architecture. Translated by Adair Mill, 86-88. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Antique Collectors’ Club Ltd., 2010.
Hüdavendigar Complex (Translated)
I Murad Külliyesi (Alternate)
Murad I Complex (Translated)
Hüdavendigar Camii (Alternate)
Hüdavendigar Cami (Alternate transliteration)
Hüdavendigar Mosque (Translated)
I Murad Türbesi (Alternate)
I Murat Türbesi (Alternate transliteration)
Murad Hudavendigar Imareti (Alternate)
Murat Hüdavendigar Imareti (Alternate transliteration)
1365-1385/766-786 AH, restored 19th-20th c./13th-15th c. AH