EMIR SULTAN SHRINE AND CEMETERY
Emir Sultan, one of the great sufis and a scholars in Islamic world , lived in Bursa city in the time of the early Ottoman state during the Bayezid I in 15th century. Emir Sultan was born in Buhara, Khorasan in 1368 and he died in Bursa in 1430 AD. He had different titles with a great fame both in Ottoman state and all over the muslim word. He was called " Buhari"- because of his birth in Khorasan, " Seyyid "-his grand grandfather was prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him ) and "Emir Sultan -married with Sultan Bayezid's daughter Hundi Hatun. He became very famous in a short time for educating & training the citizens of Bursa and he was invited to preach in Grand Mosque which we call Ulu Cami today. He critizied and warned Sultan Bayezid several times to behave in the frame of justice although he was son-in-law of the Ottoman sultan. Emir Sultan was buried in his shrine on the hill when he died and his mosque next to his tomb was built by his wife on behalf of him. The shrine and the mosque became the holy places in Bursa and later his lovers, followers and high officials wanted to be buried to be closer to the famous sufi. Therefore a big cemetery with thousands of graves & gravestones have been formed on this hill overlooking the Bursa city.
Emir Sultan Mosque is located in the centre of Kulliye-the compex and was built by Emir Sultan’s wife Hundi Hatun after his death. The mosque was destroyed by the Earthquake in 1795 and it was rebuilt by Sultan Sultan Selim III. Another Earthquake hit the mosque on the ground again that happened in 1855 and the final shape of this was renewed in 1868 by Sultan Abdulhamid II. İt used to be a small single-domed mosque when it was built first but later a porticı with three rooms were added. It is a rectangular shaped constitutes a fountain in the courtyard surrounded by porches. On the north side of the complex the place of worship was built to pray and Emir Sultan’s Tomb was placed opposite of the worship place having two rooms on each side. Emir Sultan, his wife Hundi Hatun and his two sisters were buried in this shrine.
Emir Sultan cemetery used to be a small place with just a few dozens of graves & tomstones in the beginning but as the centuries went by, it has become a large cemetery in time. It is the second oldest cemetery in Bursa city today after Zeyniler and it used to be the biggest cemetery in time of Ottoman empire where the Ottoman bureaucrats and inhabitants would race to be buried here because of most visited sight of Hudavendigar state. The Emir Sultan cemetery is one of two famous cemeteries by Ottomans , the Eyup Sultan cemetery in Konstantiniyye-Istanbul and Emil Sultan in Hudavendigar so both of them have been visited by millions of muslims and are still being visited by a large group of lovers each year. The Emir Sultan cemetery is about six hundred years old and thousands of graves used to be located here but unfortunately we have only a few hundreds today. Most of them have been broken, melted to make limestone, used for sewage system covering the holes, have been smuggled abroad and have been destroyed in the museum stores. The gravestones and sarcophagus represent the different time periods of Ottoman empire. The oldest ones belong to time of the establishment of Ottoman state with Arabic calligraphy dated between 13th and 15th centuries, the development of the empire dated 16th and 18th centuries and the collapse time dated 19th and 20th centuries.
We can recommend to see some of famous and interesting tombstones to anyone who would like visit this historical cemetery. These are ; the Janissary Mehmet bey’s tombstone died in 1760 with Serdengeçti headgear, Hacıoğluzade Ahmet Ahmet Efendi’s tombstones is really worth seeing with his identity decorated his sword on the headstone and cannonballs on the footstone. Osman pasha, the state governor of Diyarbakır and Erzurum with his kallavi headgear, Fatma Adile Hanım, the daughter of financila officer of Bursa city with her hotoz headgear decorated with medallions & elegant necklace. Sıdıka Hanım, the lady who emigrated to Bursa from Peleponnes Greece in 1893 with gold medals and pearl neclace curved on her headstone. Emir Sultan Mosque, the shrine and Emir Sultan cemetery are three holy places of Bursa city worth visited by millions of both Turkish and foreign guests each year to give respect to this great sufi. He is also accepted the spirutual founder of Ottoman empire.