Cerrah Mehmed Paşa Külliyesi
Istanbul, Türkiye
The Cerrah Mehmed Paşa Külliyesi is a mosque complex located in Istanbul, along an arterial street that branches off of the old city's main avenue, Divanyolu, and runs southwest. It is named after its patron, Cerrah (surgeon) Mehmed Paşa, a devşirme recruit who rose through the ranks to become a vizier. An inscription dates the building to 1593-1594/1002 AH. The architect was Davud Aǧa Çavuş, who succeeded Sinan as chief architect. The complex included a mosque, baths, a mausoleum, and a public fountain. 


The complex sits on an irregular plot of land sloping downward from north to south toward the Marmara. The mosque and mausoleum lie within a walled enclosure aligned with the arterial street on its north side and aligned toward the qibla (southeast) on its southern side. The baths once occupied the area west of the walled enclosure and are no longer standing. Gates in the north, east, and west sides of the walls give access to the grounds. The mausoleum is built into the northern enclosure wall. The fountain is also part of the walls, built into the angled northwestern corner of the enclosure at the intersection of a small side lane and the arterial street, facing outward. Flanking the main (north) entrance along the walls are two small cemeteries planted with trees. Beyond this is an open, paved area preceding the mosque, which takes up most of the southern half of the enclosure. 

The mosque

The mosque is a large rectangular prayer hall fronted by a portico. The arcaded portico is seven bays long with the central bay giving onto the mosque's main portal. All bays except for the central one are domed. The arches fronting the portico are carried on columns with muqarnas capitals and constructed with alternating courses of gray and red stone. A paved platform occupies the space immediately in front of the portico. 

The prayer hall is a large rectangular block with a short extension at the center of the southern (qibla) side. A large dome supported by six pillars forming a hexagonal bay covers the center of the rectangular hall. Two semidomes on either side (east and west) support the dome and cover smaller rectangular bays. A smaller semidome covers the bay over the entrance portal, on the north side of the central hexagonal space. This northern semidome is flanked by two bays on either side covered with small domes. The prayer hall is extended on the south side by a larger semidome covering an iwan-like space that also houses the mihrab.


Necipoğlu, Gülru. The Age of Sinan: Architectural Culture in the Ottoman Empire, 507-508. London: Reaktion Books, 2005.

Cerrahpasa Neighborhood, Fatih District, Istanbul, Türkiye
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Associated Names
1592-15923/1002 AH
Style Periods
Variant Names
Cerrah Mehmed Pasa Külliyesi
Alternate transliteration
Cerrah Mehmed Paşa Complex
Building Usages