Corinthia in the Ottoman period through interdisciplinary studies (SH6 3996) – COPIS

CN6:  Survey, photographs, documentation of the Ottoman monuments of the villages Νemea, Vasiliko, Τrikala, Corinth, Αg. Vasileios, Αyionori, Sofiko and other villages, which will be regarded as important after complying the relevant catalog of monuments. 

dr Eleni I. Kanetaki, architect engineer NTUA, 
Spec. in Restoration of Monuments, Univ. degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza

Ottoman monuments in Corinthia

The Ottoman Turkish tribe started conquering the Balkan peninsula around the last decades of the 14th c. Especially Peloponnese was occupied by the Ottoman twice. Originally in mid 15th c., till the second half of 17th c. and from ca. 1715 until the Hellenic Revolution War. 

Ottomans marked their passage by the Balkan cities with the offprint of their culture: although they brought many of their cultural features from Anatolia, they assimilated others found in the conquered lands and developed a multi-cultural character. This noticeable architectural “Ottoman” expression included many building types, that were formed within this cultural mix: Architecture was practised primarily under the guidance of Islamic faith, serving also as a mean of responding to public needs, (social and commercial ones), as well as an expression of power and posthumous fame by the dominant rulers of the Empire. 

In Greece numerous Ottoman buildings were constructed during the Ottoman (Turkish) occupation, that can still be traced all over the Hellenic lands. A large number of them has not survived till today, but were destroyed during the past century. The existing Ottoman buildings are nowadays under protection of the Ministry of Culture and are listed as “monuments worthy to be preserved”. 
Ottoman Buildings which are found in Greece belong to three basic categories: 

religious buildings, such as mosques (cami), mescit, tekke, türbe, imaret, medrese, that in many cases formed part of a külliye,
secular buildings, i. social- public and ii. domestic ones, (including commercial ones, such as bedestens, social buildings, as hammams, fountains (çeşme or sebil), markets, caravanserais, libraries, etc. and houses-sarays, castles, etc.),
works of military architecture, such as fortresses, towers.

Besides Mosques, there were several other types of Ottoman monuments. As Islam prescribes ablution before prayer and the overall importance of water, there was a wide demand for the construction of fountains, public baths and water supplies, facilities which definitely were rare before the Ottoman occupation. 

In addition, its insistence on Islamic education and study from childhood to old age gave a great impulse to the building of medreses. Also, since social and medical assistance are among the basic principles of this religion, hospices and hospitals were required to be built. Finally the importance attached in Islam to commerce created a demand for hostelries and caravanserais. 

Therefore, mosques, religious schools, convents, soup-kitchens for the poor, khans, baths (hammams) were constructed, enriching the conquered cities with a number of religious and secular buildings, necessary for the Ottoman society’s basic needs. 

The second part of this multiscientific research (CN6) focuses on the Architectural, Topographical and Historical Documentation of the Ottoman Monuments in Corinthia, based on in situ conducted field work -architectural survey plans, combined with bibliographical references and historical data available. 

The existing Ottoman monuments that have survived in the geographical region of Corinthia are found mostly in the former administrative centre of Ancient Corinth (Gördüs) and at the hill of Acrocorinth, while others are found scattered in smaller settlements of the area (i.e. Vasiliko). 

Apart from the Ottoman monuments of Corinthia (mosques, baths, tekke, türbe, etc), the scientific research will incorporate a few representative buildings, that were constructed by the locals, the native Greek population, who resided the Corinthian villages. Therefore a. secular buildings, such as mansions belonging to noted Greek families, as well as fortified residences-towers), and b. religious buildings-complexes, such as Christian postbyzantine churches and monasteries, built during the time that the Corinthian lands were under the Ottoman occupation, may be included, although they certainly are not being considered as “Ottoman” but as “postbyzantine”, in case of the churches and monasteries.  

Ottoman monuments in the region of Corinthia: the historic settlements of Ancient Corinth (Gördűs) and Ancient Sikyona (Vasiliko)

1.Ottoman Monuments in Ancient Corinth

• Haci Mustafa fountain
• Anaploga fountain 
• Murat Ağa fountain 
Tekke (Sezai-yi Gülseni Türbesi)
Tekke fountain (remains)
Kachros fountain (remains)
Kiamil Bey’s palace (remains)
Kiamil Bey’s palace monumental stairway 
• Kiamil (Kâmil) Bey’s palace hammam
Small hammam at the lower city
• Hammam at the lower city behind the Tekke

2. Ottoman Monuments in Ancient Sikyona (Vasiliko):

Megali” or “Palia Vrysi” (Big Fountain)
Mikri Vrysi” (Small Fountain)
Sikyona arched bridge “Tourkogefyra” over the Asopos river, near Vasiliko

Apart from the Ottoman monuments of Corinthia, the scientific research incorporates a few representative buildings constructed by the locals, the native Greek population, who resided the Corinthian villages. Therefore a. secular buildings, such as mansions belonging to noted Greek families, as well as fortified residences-towers), and b. religious buildings-complexes, such as Christian postbyzantine churches and monasteries, built during the time that the Corinthian lands were under the Ottoman occupation, may be included, although they certainly are not being considered as “Ottoman” but as “postbyzantine”. 

Monuments found in the region of Corinthia, whose date of construction is estimated during the period of the dating from the Ottoman period in Corinthia

Secular buildings (mansions, fortified residences-towers) & Religious buildings (Postbyzantine churches and monasteries). Representative noted monuments.

1. Sykia near Xylokastro

Kiamil Bey’s summer residence (Sgourewn tower-residence)

2. Trikala Corinthias

Notara’s mansion in Ano Trikala
Dasiou mansion in Ano Trikala
Koimisi Theotokou Mesi Synoikia 

3. Pyrgos near Evrostini

• Pyrgos Kordi

4.  Nemea 

• Agios Georgios church

5. Zacholi (Evrostini) 

• Agios Georgios church

6. Pheneos 

Agios Georgios Monastery

7. Sofiko

Hypapante church (church of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple)
• Agios Georgios church
Αgios Αntonios church

8. Ancient Sikyona (Vasiliko)

Agios Nikolaos church.



Web Design and Development : Diadrasis Logo