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Orhan & Osmangazi Mausoleums

By now, you’ve probably heard plenty about the power and opulence of the Ottoman Dynasty, and might expect the tombs of the men who founded it to be great and extravagant monuments. You will be disappointed if that is your expectation, however, when you visit the graves of the sultans Osman and his son Orhan, founders of the Ottoman Empire. Osman was a tribal emir who founded the dynasty, which he passed on to his son, who went on to capture the city of Bursa and adopted the title of sultan. Their tombs here, built on the foundations of a small Byzantine church, are remarkably simple and surprisingly unassuming. In 1855, an earthquake destroyed the original structure along with much of Bursa, and was rebuilt by Sultan Abdul Azziz. It is of course necessary to humble yourself, however subtly, while in the presence of the two souls who lie in this peaceful tomb, and you will need to take off your shoes before entering their eternal abode.

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