Great Mosque of Gümüş: An Architectural Study on The Date and Patron ProblemMustafa Çağhan Keskin
The mosque in Gümüş, a small town in the Amasya region, attracts attention because of the problem of identifying its patron. The Turkish inscription written in the Latin Alphabet “Yörgüç Rüstem Paşa Camisi 1426” on the plate on the portal, consubstantiating Yörgüç Paşa and Rüstem Paşa, identifies a historical figure who never existed as the patron of the building. This consubstantiation refers to two important actors in the construction process of the mosque: Yörgüç Paşa (d. 1442), the vizier of Murad II and Rüstem Paşa (d. 1561), the vizier of Süleyman I. This study does not aim to reveal whether Yörgüç Paşa or Rüstem Paşa was the true patron who commissioned the building, rather it aims to examine the building in detail to date its parts.
Gümüş Ulu Camii: Bani ve Dönem Sorunları Üzerine Bir Mimari DenemeMustafa Çağhan Keskin
Amasya’nın Gümüş kasabasında yer alan cami, banisinin kim olduğuna ilişkin sorunlar ile dikkat çeker. Taç kapı üzerinde bulunan “Yörgüç Rüstem Paşa Camii 1426” ibaresi, Yörgüç Paşa ile Rüstem Paşa’yı özdeşleştirerek tarihte hiç var olmamış bir figürü bani olarak ilan eder. Bu özdeşim, caminin oluşumundaki en önemli iki aktöre referans vermektedir; II. Murad’ın vezirlerinden Yörgüç Paşa (ö.1442) ve Kanuni Sultan Süleyman’ın vezirlerinden Rüstem Paşa (ö.1561). Bani kimliğine ilişkin karmaşa, yalnız yöredeki geleneksel özdeşim üzerinden değil, yapıya dair günümüze ulaşan yazılı kaynaklarda da izlenebilir. Bu araştırma, caminin gerçek banisinin kim olduğunu veya Yörgüç Paşa ya da Rüstem Paşa’dan hangisinin bu yapıya ismini vermeyi hak ettiğini ortaya koymayı amaçlamayan, ancak, yapısal veriler üzerinden bir mimarlık tarihi okuması yaparak, hangi kısımların hangi döneme ait olabileceğini tartışmayı öngören bir denemedir.
The mosque in Gümüş, a small town in Amasya region, draws attention because of the problem of identifying the patron. The Turkish inscription written in the Latin Alphabet “Yörgüç Rüstem Paşa Camisi 1426” on the plate on the portal, consubstantiating Yörgüç Paşa and Rüstem Paşa, identifies a historical figure who never existed as the patron of the building. This consubstantiation refers to two important actors in the construction process of the mosque: Yörgüç Paşa (d. 1442), the vizier of Murad II and Rüstem Paşa (d. 1561), the vizier of Süleyman I. In his twelve volumes city history, Amasya Tarihi, Hüseyin Hüsameddin states that the Great Mosque of Gümüş was built of timber by Yörgüç Paşa in 1430; the timber structure later burned down and Rüstem Paşa built the existing mosque in 1560- 1561. The vaqf records of Rüstem Paşa confirm the information given by Hüseyin Hüsameddin. According to his vaqf records, he restored the mosque of Yörgüç Paşa that had previously been ruined. The mosque is built of stone. The plan scheme is rectangular and divided into three naves by four unengaged pillars. The main nave is covered by three domes and the side naves are covered by three cross vaults each. The six columned last prayer hall is covered with a timber roof. The minaret built of stone is located on the northwestern corner of the mosque. The plan scheme of the Great Mosque of Gümüş is an example of the 14th and 15th century hypostyle mosque tradition called Ulu Cami (The Great Mosque). The Great Mosques of Early Ottoman cities such as Bursa (Ulu Cami and Şehadet Mosque), Edirne (Eski Camii), Filibe (Filibe Hüdavendigar Mosque), Bergama (Ulu Cami), Dimetoka (Çelebi Sultan Mehmed Mosque) and Tokat (Takyeciler Mosque) display the same plan scheme. All of these mosques, are covered by domes and/or vaults. Two 13th century buildings, the Gök Medrese Mosque and Burmalı Minare Mosque, could be discussed as archetypes of this plan scheme in Amasya region. In particular, the Burmalı Minare Mosque comes to the forefront with its structural similarity with the Great Mosque of Gümüş. It is also divided into three naves by four unengaged pillars, its main nave covered by three domes and side naves covered by three cross vaults each. This is an indication that this plan scheme was an earlier tradition within the Amasya region. This plan scheme was not a preference in the 16th century and beyond. During the time of Rüstem Paşa, Mimar Sinan was the chief architect. Only one building, the Piyale Paşa Mosque in İstanbul, designed by Mimar Sinan displays the Ulu Cami plan scheme. However, Mimar Sinan, who listed all the buildings commissioned by Rüstem Paşa in his autobiography, did not mention the Great Mosque of Gümüş. This indicates that, the Great Mosque of Gümüş was not built entirely in the 16th Century by Rüstem Paşa but restored and renovated as stated in his vaqf records. All of the 14th and 15th century Ottoman mosques displaying the Ulu Cami plan scheme were commissioned by Sultans. In fact, the Great Mosque of Sofia, is known as the first building displaying the Ulu Cami plan scheme that was commissioned by a vizier, Mahmud Paşa during the reign of Sultan Mehmed II. In respect to this, if the plan scheme of the Great Mosque of Gümüş was not modified during Rüstem Paşa’s restoration, this could be seen as a challenge to Yörgüç Paşa in the first half of 15th century. Yörgüç Paşa, who ruled the Vilâyet-i Rûm province comprising Amasya, Tokat, Çorum and Samsun regions, was a very powerful local governor with a tendency towards autonomy. The monuments which he and his family commissioned throughout the province (in Amasya, Tokat, Havza, Gümüş, Vezirköprü, Kavak and İskilip) between 1429 and 1442, were instruments indicating his economic and politic power. As Ayverdi states, it is impossible to accurately reveal which parts of the Great Mosque of Gümüş belong to 15th century’s original building, and which parts were added by Rüstem Paşa in the mid-16th century. However, the mosques that were commissioned by Yörgüç Paşa nearby (in Havza, Kavak and Vezirköprü), are built of stone and covered with timber hipped roofs. The Great Mosque of Merzifon, which was built by the order of Sultan Murad II, (whenYörgüç Paşa was the governor of the province), is built of stone and covered with a timber hipped roof, as well. In spite of his political ideas, Yörgüç Paşa was not supposed to build a mosque more monumental than the one built in Merzifon by the Sultan in the same time period. This study does not aim to reveal whether Yörgüç Paşa or Rüstem Paşa was the true patron who commissioned the building, rather it aims to examine the building in detail to date its parts and to discuss the architecture of the existing mosque within the traditions of 15th and 16th centuries’ architectural styles and techniques.