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Sivas, the cradle of the Republic of Turkey

on 04/09/2014

Sivas

     This city of 250 000 inhabitants situated 110 km south-east of Tokat in the heart of Anatolia took part in the foundation of the Republic of Turkey. It is indeed where the Turkish War of Independence was proclaimed during the congress held by Atatürk in September 1919.

It is also in Sivas that most of the prettiest Seljukid monuments of the country are to be found. The majority of these edifices are situated in the park near Hükümet Square.

The old Koranic school Bürüciye Medresesi was built in 1271 by Muzaffer Bürücerdi who is buried inside. There is also an agreeable tea garden.

Across the street the Sifaiye Medresesi, once the Faculty of Medicine, harbours a sumptuous and intricately carved façade. Built in 1217 it is one of the oldest monuments of Sivas and was erected for Sultan Izzettin Keykavus I who died of tuberculosis and whose body rests inside.

Opposite this place you will find the Çifte Minare Medresesi. Built in 1271 it has, as suggested by its name, two minarets. Its gate is a magnificent example of Seljukid architecture.

The oldest edifice of the city is the Ulu Mosque, built in 1197. Its astonishing leaning brick minaret was added in 1213.

A bit further you will find the superb Gök Medresesi with its beautifully carved stones, its blue ceramic tiles that gave it its name and its abundant decorations.

The Kale Mosque was built in 1580 by Mahmut Pasha, Grand Vizier of Sultan Murat III, and is a beautiful specimen of Ottoman architecture.

Opposite the Mosque you will find the Ottoman school where the Sivas Congress was held on September 4th 1919. You can visit this building as it is now a museum with two sections: the Atatürk Congress and Ethnography Museum. The room where the historical event took place is situated on the first floor and hasn’t changed for almost a century.


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