City Religious monuments



Valide Soultana Mosque (Turhan Hatice)
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The mosque of Turhan Hatice still dominates with its imposing minaret next to the Great Gate (Guora Porta) of Rethymnon old town, though it is enclosed by several modern buildings. Turhan Hadice belonged to the sultan Ibrahim's harem (1640-1648) and became a Valide sultan in 1648 when her son, Mehmet D, became sultan. She also founded the Turkish School in Rethymnon, today's 1st Rethymno Primary School.

The oldest reference to the mosque dates back to 1654, shortly after the Ottomans occupied the city. A document of 1671 specified the dependence of the Valide Sultan Mosque on the Bahçe Kapusu, Istanbul. It operated as a mosque until the exchange of populations between Greece and Turkey in 1925, when it was deserted.

The mosque retains a part with two domes and is "drowned" in the urban part of the old city. The nave of the sanctuary (mihrab) is framed by columns with two Corinthian capitals inverted. The semicircular arch of the Mihrab is framed by a relief veneer and an inscription that reads the following verse from the Koran: "kullama dakhala AAalayha zakariyya almihraba" (Al-Imran, 37). Above the entrance of the mosque there is an inscription with the date 1816, referring to restoration works by Hilmi Ibrahim Pasha.

The minaret is built of isodomic stones, has a cylindrical balcony and its cover is a pyramid. Above the entrance there is an inscription of 1878 which translates like this: " The famous Mehmet Aga Bolanakis [...] set a goal and immediately built this minaret. With his care, Valide mosque was delighted. The Sunites pray for him every day. The name of the benefactor is mentioned by the muezzin. For such a pleasing work, all praises and greetings and readings are not enough for him. May God reward him in both worlds (present and future). Fevzi decorated the timeline with words: "The great act of donation is a praise in ages." 15 Rebiguelevel 1295 [19 March 1878]. Below the blacony there is inscription "maşallah!", as well as embossed pendant.

Inside a store in Bosporou Street, formerly a patio area, the fountain of the mosque with nine small pillars with relief half moons (18th century) is preserved. In the same area there is the arched entrance to the fountain.

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