An excellent example of Ottoman architecture in Mostar

This article is part of the project 'Promotion of the Ottoman Cultural Heritage of Bosnia and Turkey' which is organized by Monolit, Association for Promoting Islamic Arts and supported by the Republic of Turkey (YTB - T.C. BAŞBAKANLIK Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı / Prime Ministry, Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities).

image The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque / Photo © Islamic Arts Magazine

The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque in Mostar represents another extraordinary piece of Ottoman architecture in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Besides the Karadžoz Bey Mosque, this is most known and most monumental mosque in Mostar.

It was built in the year of 1618/19 and represents the large construction of the classical Ottoman architecture in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Its founder is Mehmed Koskija who was the chronicler of the great vizier Lala Mehmed Sokolovic. He died in 1611 and the building of the Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque was finished by his brother Mahmud. Besides the mosque, he built a madrasah too.

The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque has a one-space plan with a dome. Designed in the main architecture office in Istanbul, it was built from the precisely tanned stone blocks. Its architecture design is very similar to the Karadžoz Beg Mosque, which probably served as a model. Unlike the Karadžoz Beg Mosque, the minaret of the Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque is slightly lower without the stalactite decoration in the area of sherefe. It has a porch with three domes, and extraordinary well made mihrab and mimber. The proportions of the Mosque are especially distinguished. The location of the Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque is quite specific as it is placed on the cliffs of the river of Neretva, in the center of the city.

image The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque / Photo © Islamic Arts Magazine

image The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque, dome / Photo © Islamic Arts Magazine

image The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque, interior / Photo © Islamic Arts Magazine

image The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque, L. The carpet, gift from Austrian monarch Franjo Josip / R. Mihrab / Photo © Islamic Arts Magazine

During the war in Bosnia (1992-95), it was badly damaged by the Croatian military forces, and its restoration took place during 1996-2001. The Mosque used to have an extraordinary collection of the manuscripts of Qur'an, from which some were preserved but today they belong to other collections. The Mosque also possesses the carpet which was the gift from Austrian monarch Franjo Josip. The Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque represents also one of most popular touristic destinations in Mostar.


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