Bedestans InThe Grand Bazaar

Sandal  Bedestan (New Bedestan) Bedestan-i Cedid : Sandal bedestan was built on thick stone elephant feet by the commancl of Mehmecl the Conqueror. The records on this bedestan in the Act of Mehmecl the Conqueror Foundation was: … The shops inside this beclestan are called Bezeziye. The royal palace of the sultan is close to Iate Mahmut Paşa Hospice and located in the same neighborhoocl with Çaktrağa mosque. It contains a hunclred and eighteen trunks. The bedestan anel the surraunding shops are affiliated with the Noble Foundation. Bezazlar, Takkeciler anel Terziler are quite places in this beclestan. The market callecl Flea Market is subjecteel to the shops that sell clry goocls. There are eight h undreel forty nin e shops in total … ” The place which the bedestan was built was full of wrecks of old builclings. It is probable that when the bedestan was built by the orcler of Mehmet the Conqueror, it was built on some of these ruins. The thickness of the bricks usecl for the arehes leaves no cloubt about the structure’s Turkish quality. The hewn stones on stairs are the obvious examples of Turkish craftsmanship which is seen eveıywhere. The rims of the clomes are octagons and have plane surfaces. These rims are not seen at Byzantine structures. As of being one of the Byzantine historians Kritovulos, affirms that the construction of this Bazaar was macle as a result of Mehmed the Conqueror’s commanel. Beelestan has four gates nameel “Şark (East), Garp (West), Şimal (North), Cemıp (South) which were slmt clown fifty years ago. Şark Gate opens to Nuruosmaniye. Garp Gate opens to silversmiths anel jewelers. Şimal Gate opens to Mahfazacılar Street. Cenub gate was turneel into a lavatory anel coal bunker during the restorations of auction halis in beclestan even though it opens to Kalpakçılarbaşı Avemıe. The interior of the Bedestan was divicled into wood compartments and usecl as Auction Hall, Furniture Hall, Jewelıy Hall, Rug Hall and Bank. Beclestan is sort of a coverecl Bazaar which comes from the word Bezzistan or Bezzazistan which means the place that sells clry goocls. In the East,

Bedestans were buildings which were covered with domes on the top and had iron gates on four sides along with the stone shelters. They were built for the purpose of seliing textites first but after a while antiques and precious goods starteel to be sold there. In bedestans and markets, other than the fabric nameel “san dal”, fabrics lik e “altın oluk, damgahan e, kermesucl, İstanbul salısı, peşni, beider, yemeni, çatma, çuha” were being solcl along with the belts nameel “kelbela”. As a warranty of these merchanclises’ quality, they all had a registerecl official stamp on. The importation of the European merchandise and clry goocls beginning from the reforms in Ottoman Empire in the midelle of the 19th century attenuatecl the olcler fabrics anel markets. Money and precious goocls were being kept in the safe deposit boxes by trustworthy people called “Haceği” in return of a rent. The process was just !ike the way it is in current banks. The judge of İstanbul was also the administrator of the bedestans. Trade guilcls, captains, prayers, potice officers, judges woulcl try to develop trust among people. Bedestan had an orderly and secuı·ed guarding system. It had twelve officers who were called “Bölükbaşı”. They all had authority anel were guarantors for one another. The opening in the morning anel the dosing in the evening were done with a ceremony arrangecl by the “Bölükbaşı”. After beclestan closes, one bölükbaşı anel helpers woulcl take turns to wait in the beclestan until the morning time. After he finishes his prayer, the Prayer man woulcl make traclesmen gather araund him anel repeat “Oh the community of Muslims … No one will cheat, No one will seli merchanclise without a guarantor, and No one will keep the en tire profit to oneself”. The eriers who were callecl “Criers of Peace” were also selected from very trustworthy people. Many lost anel.

Cevahir Bedestan- Inner Bedestan Old Bedestan : This beelestan is nameel “Cevahir Bedestan” because antiques aresold in here. Again, because of the fact that it is locateel in towards the midst of the bedestan, it is called “Inn er Bedestan”. It is als o cal! eel Old Bed es tan because it is older than Sandal Bedestan. Although Evliya Çelebi wrote that the bedestans in the Grand Bazaar were built during the times of Mehmed the Conqueror, the time that Old Bedestan was built is not known for certain. Byzantine history mentions of valuable goods and money that were being kept in bedestan and that these belongings were burned away during the Nika riot in the beginning of the 6th centuıy during Justinian I period. Since the bedestan is mentioneel as one of the properties that are left from Byzantine in the Charter of Mehmecl the Conqueror Foundation, it can be cecidec that Inner Bedestan was rebuilt onto the walls that were left from Byzantine times by Turks. The becestan sits on eight elephant feet anel it has pendentives and comes. It is 45.3×295=1336 square meters large. The width of the clomes, the diagonal civisions in the corner shops, windows arrangements anel the organization of repositories are all designeel !ike the ones in Edirne. It is reasonable to think that the stone eagle relief that stili stays on the gate of the Jewelers sice (similar to the one on Yedikule Altınkapı) was founc in that place and put on the gate. The benches of Beclestan anel the paying eagle relief appear clearly in a gravııre macle in 1 7th centuıy. What is also attention- grabbing in this gravııre is that all of the haceğis (merchants) are wearing the same kind of conical hat. Other than the shops and repositories, there were iron trunks unclerneath the shops in Bedestan. In these trunks precious items anel jewelry, which were either owned by merchants, the jewelers from the market outside or the people of the town, were being kept in exchange for a fee. Money anel accounts were also kept in these trunks anel were being guardeel by a person. The establishment of banks and safe deposit boxes brought the hınction of trunks into a halt. In Bedestan there were jewelıy, gold, guns, precious fabrics, shawls, furs, rugs anel eveıy kinci of valuable goods w hi ch w ere brought from the big cities of the Empire anel the world. Other than the Topkapi Palace Department of Treasuıy anel the official treasuries in Yedikule Hisar, the royal treasury which was allocateel for commerce was establishecl here. Nicolay ele Nicolay who visitec the Becestan in the second half of the 16th century notes that the precious furs, cloaks made of marten, golc and silver embroiclered and silky fabrics, excellent morocco leathers and daggers were being sold in bedestan for veıy cheap prices comparing to the other places in the world. Tournefort who came to İstanbul in the beginning of the 18th centuıy wrote: “Beclestan has been uncer renovations for four years. The comes are being constructed with bricks anel beclestan is being turned into a brighter place.” The Granc market: Consielering the architecture of (the Granc Bazaar), there is no coubt of it being an Ottoman structure. Ottomans paic a lot of attention to the Granc Bazaar and establishec serimıs regulations.

Galata Bedestan: Despite the fact that is durable currently, Galata Bedestan, unfortunately is used as a storage space. Its architectural style demonstı·ates the properties of Mehmed the Conqueror period (15th Centuıy). This structure with nine domes and brick planks was reopenecl as a beclestan as an affliation to the big Hagia Sofia Foundation after the death of Sokullu Mehmed Pasha (1505- 1579), the vizier of Suleiman the Magnificent. It was in the Karaköy Tersane Avenue where it was located on the left hand side after passing the “Tunnel”. It sits on four thick stone feet that are attached by iron beams. It has four gates but three of them are closecl. The recoveıy of the Bedestan made it one of the shopping center at that time. Although the entrance porch, inn er fountain, cabinets, treasury and security rooms are ruined, the watch wharfs-these wood whaıfs were also usecl to open the upper windows .for the ventilation-which surrouncls the gates all araund just like the one in Inner Bedestan of Grancl Bazaar keeps its originality with its spaces for safe boxes anel column feet.
Tiryaki Market: On the east point of the complex acljacent to Suleymaniye Mosque, there is a stone courtyarcl where Hesap Fountain is located. The shops lineel on the south of this courtyard are called Tiıyaki Market. It was built by Sinan the architect in 16th centuıy during the period of Suleiman the Magnificent.
Egyptian Bazaar (Spice Bazaar): The second covered Bazaar in İstanbul is the Egyptian Bazaar. A covered road in Makı·on Envalos Street was used as a path to the palace by Byzantines. The Egyptian Bazaar is located on this road which was turneel into a bazaar by Venetians anel people of Genoese. The current Egyptian Bazaar was constructecl by Hatice Turhan Sultan, Mehmecl IV’s mother, as a charity to the mosque. In 1689 a fire starteel in the Bazaar and ccıused the destruction of the majority of the wood shops. However in a short period of time, the Bazaar was repaired drastically. According to the court records, the construction had starteel with the architect Kasım Ağa anel completecl in 1660 along with Yeni Cami (New Mosqı..ıe) by architect Mustafa Ağa. The Bazaar has an L shape plan. By the restaration in 1943, it took its latest shape. In this restaration the door got opened by the removal of the benches in front of the shops. However, this behaviour ma de Bazaar lose its originality. Apart from six herbalist shops in the Bazaar, others look the same as the ones in any street of the city. On the Bahçekapı side, there were rooms called the “Court of Commerce” where the juclges were present. That floor is now the Mı..ınicipal Collection Agency. The Bazaar is made out of the constrı..ıction materials of hewn stone, brick, and brick planks. Its braicl design gives an elegant impression to it anel pendentive covers anel doı11es show an architectural quality. The domes’ stone banners which were criticizecl mistakenly after the restaration were put back according to their original places. Moldings, celen anel rain gargoyles are some of the beaı..ıtiful details of Onoman-Turkish architectı..ıre. There are six gates and eighty six shops in the bazaar. Three of these gates are clecoı·atecl with ornaments and give the Bazaar a more effectual atmosphere. The Egyptian Bazaar and the New Mosque were locatecl by the water inside the walls. These walls were elemolisbed anel the Bazaar was opened to the street.

The Covered Bazaar Under The Laleli Mosque: The shops uncler the Laleli Mosque which are ı..ıncler restaration for the last few years are another example of oı..ır covered bazaars. For this 19th centı..ııy strı..ıcture with thick bright buttresses, the marble pool in the midelle anel clifferent hall and exit gates, simplicity anel practicability of oı..ır dassic architecture were preferrecl Lınlike the architecture of the mosqı..ıe. Inside the Bazaar, there are seven halis, fifty shops, one courtyard with a pool and a strangely designeel gate with four exits. Outside there are sixteen shops on two streets. Its constıuction catches attention.
Bakirciler Bazaar: One of the conspicuous bazaars in İstanbul especially for foreigners is Bakırcılar in Beyazıd. The bazaar is foımecl by a line of shops anel is located under the noıth and east walls of İstanbul University where Old Harbiye Jail used to be located. Here, copper plates are beaten by hancl in order to make many copper items !ike kettles, pots, saucepans, pans, bowls, basins, pitchers, jugs, buckets, cups, trays, braziers anel canelle holders. It was a custom to bı..ıy a gift made out of copper to the weddings until recently. The rules on old coppersmith regulations anel exportation are in the records of those times. It is also known that copper used to be combineel with gold up to 5%. Even today, it is not possible to separate copper from gold. The first Bakırcılar (Coppersmiths) Bazaar was built during the Mehmed the Conqueror period and nameel Sukı..ı Nuhasin. It was located in the place where Eminönü New Mosque currently is.

Currents  Bazaars: When İstanbul was nameel Constantinople as the capital of Byzantine, it was a kinci of city which was kept inside the city walls with sieges, especially from the enel of the 13th centuıy to the micldle of the 15th. The population variecl between sixty thousancl to one hunclrecl thousancl. The city was 13.88 square kilometers. In Fenerbahçe (Hieria), Boğaziçi (Bosporus), Bakırköy (Hora) and Adalar (Princes’ Islands), there were only summer houses. The Byzantine capital inside the city walls, which spreads over a 272 square kilometers area now, only filled an area of two branch offices of the İstanbul Municipality. Countless bazaars were built to supply the needs of about two million people in fourteen communities inside the Municipality region. Some of these bazaars contain an historic identity while some are newly built. The shops in İstanbul stili have the eastern atmosphere except the modern ones which line from Beyoğlu Tunnel to Şişli and Maçka. You should especially see Mahmutpaşa which has its own unique rumpus, The Mercan Bazaar where leather goods are sold, and Eminönü Food Bazaar where the good quality fruits and vegetables that come from many cities in the country are sold. Various samples of Turkish textile industıy which has an important place in world market are gathered in Sultanhamam and surrounclings. You can not have enough of the delicious seafood !ike fish, mussel, scallop, lobster and shrimp on trays which are being sold four seasons of the year in Beyoğlu fish market. It is located in İstiklal Avenue where you take a left from Galatasaray. Many various kinds of foocls are being sold in this Bazaar. Üsküclar Hamam (Public bath) which was built by the architect Sinan in 16th centuıy has been uncler restaration and is being turneel into a covered Bazaar. Here is the outline of the course of colorful life of İstanbul Bazaars history.

 Reşat Ekrem Koçuş

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