Though built (1267) as a Muslim theological seminary, it has been restored and is now Konya’s Museum of Wooden Artifacts and Stone Carving. The exhibits inside are significant, but it is the building itself that you come to see.
It’s grand portal, heavily and completely carved with Seljuk decoration and Kur’anic inscriptions, is among the finest of all Seljuk grand portals.
|The beautiful tiled interior|
The minaret, partially destroyed by a lightning strike in 1901, was exceptionally tall (see the old photo below) and finely decorated with typically Seljuk sky-blue tiles.
Inside, the tile decoration is also fine: in the dome, the squinches, and above the windows. Only a fraction of the tile decoration has survived, but even that fraction is very impressive.
Exhibits within the museum include elaborately carved wooden mosque doors and decorative panels, marble panels carved with typical Seljuk designs of birds, lions, angels and double-headed eagles and even a few elephants.
Keep in mind the building’s original purpose: the main hall, with its restful, refreshing pool of water, was the center of seminary life. The large eyvans (alcoves) were used for classes, the smaller rooms as living quarters.
The Ince Minare Medrese is open every day from 09:00 am to 12:00 noon and 13:00 to 17:00 (1 to 5 pm) for TL2.
|Great Karatay Medresesi|