Senem GÜNAY1, Ayşe AYDIN2

1Muğla Sıtkı Koçman Üniversitesi SBE Yüksek Lisans Öğrencisi
2Muğla Sıtkı Koçman Üniversitesi Edebiyat Fakültesi Sanat Tarihi Bölümü Muğla/Türkiye

Keywords: Abdullah Ozsoy, Yatagan, Minaret-Mosque, Stonemason


The subject of this study is the works of Abdullah Ozsoy, who was a famous stonemason of his period in the region he lived. There are two purposes of our approach to the subject. The first is to introduce Abdullah Ozsoy’s works that have survived to the present day in a scientific study for the first time and to evaluate them in terms of Art History. The second purpose is to ensure that Ozsoy’s buildings, which are cultural assets to be protected, are registered and passed on to future generations.

In the study, the architectural structures of Abdullah Ozsoy that have survived to the present day were seen in situ, documented with photographs and their drawings were made. The statements of people who knew Abdullah Ozsoy in person, especially his daughter, in the conducted oral history study has been a guide.

Abdullah Ozsoy lived between 1899 and1968. He is a well-known stonemason in Yatagan. Of the numerous houses he built in Eskihisar and the surrounding villages, only his own house’s basement level has survived to the present day. In 1936, he built the pedestal of the Atatürk statue in the city centre square of Mugla. Two out of the four small bridges he built in the 1950s are still standing today. The first known minaret of Abdullah Ozsoy, who started to build minarets in the surrounding villages of Yatagan in 1960, is in the Katranci quarter (1960). This was followed by Tuzabat (1961), Zeytinkoy (1963), Bahceyaka (1964) and the minaret in Sahinler quarter (1965). His last minaret is in Bagyaka quarter (1966). Except for the Mosque he built together with the minaret in Zeytinkoy quarter, the fact that the mosques to which these minarets belong have been renovated may show that the old mosques may have been built by Abdullah Ozsoy, but there is no evidence in this sense. The only mosque that Ozsoy built and has survived to the present day, Zeytinkoy Quarter Mosque, has common features with other mosques in the centre of Mugla and around Yatagan, especially in Eskihisar with its sanctuary plan and hip roof, and the original arched structure of the last congregation place.

Ozsoy built the minarets in two ways; adjacent to the mosque or separately. The bases of the minarets have three different plan schemes: octagonal, hexagonal and square. The pedestals made of rubble stone are plastered inside and covered with neatly cut marble blocks of different sizes on the outside. Marble blocks are framed by joints in four directions. The transition segment of the minarets are made of rubble stone and cement, their bodies and upper parts are made of cement, twisted or grooved by the moulds used by the master.

There are remarkable elements in the decoration program of the minarets. In the conical octagonal transition segment of the minarets of the Katranci, Zeytinkoy and Bahceyaka Mosques, there is a medallion made in the low relief technique on each façade. In the Katranci example, the medallions are whole, while in Zeytinkoy and Bahceyaka, the medallions are presented only with their outer frames. In the example of Bahceyaka, each façade ends in a half-moon shape over the medallion. All of the minarets have double-staged, outward-protruding triangular decorations of the balcony. With the exception of the Bagyaka Quarter Mosque minaret, geometric ornamentation with star motifs in the lattice carving technique has become standard on all facades of the balusters of the minarets. The balusters of the Bagyaka minaret is cylindrical. Minarets have inscriptions informing about their construction dates, their masters and their patrons.

The houses and religious buildings built by Abdullah Ozsoy in Yatagan district, the minarets in particular, perpetuate the tradition in the region that was formed and set examples until the Republican period. The mentioned structures should be registered as they are valuable representatives of the period in which they were built. Sustaining the efforts to promote the works of local masters such as Abdullah Ozsoy in order to get the value they deserve will contribute to the History of Art and Architecture on regional basis.