Fethiye Museum

Fethiye Museum information

Istanbul , Turkey
Fethiye Caddesi
+90 212 635 1273
Getting there
Bus: 99, 99A, 99Y from Eminönü, 55T from Taksim
More information
Opening hours
9am-7pm mid-Apr–late Oct, to 5pm late Oct–mid-Apr
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Not long after the Conquest, Mehmet the Conqueror visited this 13th-century church to discuss theological questions with the Patriarch of the Orthodox Church. They talked in the southern side chapel known as the parecclesion , which is decorated with gold mosaics and is now open as a small museum.

The church was endowed by a nephew of Emperor Michael VIII Palaeologos and built between 1292 and 1294; the chapel was endowed by the benefactor's wife (the inscription around Christ's head at the base of the half dome reads 'The nun Maria gave the promise of salvation in the name of her husband, the victorious and deserving protostrator Michael Glabas Ducas') and dates from 1315. It was the seat of the Christian Orthodox Patriarchate from 1455 to 1587, after which time it was converted into a mosque and named Fethiye (Conquest) to commemorate Sultan Murat III's victories in Georgia and Azerbaijan. Part of the building still functions as a mosque, while this part is a deconsecrated museum.

In the paracclesion, the most impressive of the mosaics are the Pantokrator and 12 Prophets adorning the dome, and the Deesis (Christ with the Virgin and St John the Baptist) in the apse.