Also known as the “Osmanlı” or “Nuruosman” Mosque, the Nuru Osmaniye Mosque’s construction began during the reign of Mahmud I. The mosque was completed by the architect Mustafa Ağa in 1755, after the death of Mamud I. The mosque was built with a large, two-entrance courtyard and is surrounded by a madrassa, soup kitchen, library, public fountain and a number of shops.
Influenced by the baroque style, the mosque has 14 domes resting on 12 columns. 174 windows, arranged in rows of 5, light the interior of the mosque while outside there are two, two-tiered minarets. The interior acoustics of the mosque are spectacular.
Mosque is a place of worship for Muslims. It comes from the Arabic word 'masjid' which literally means "a place for prostration". Mosques are also places where Muslims come together for different purposes such as education, social gatherings, public meetings, exhibitions, lectures etc. Although there is no specific requirement for mosques in terms of their architecture, one can see some common features inside and outside of many mosques such as minarets, domes, ablution areas, prayer niche (mihrab), pulpit (minbar) and so on.
Muslims are obliged to perform the ritual worship 5 times a day. They are not required to attend a mosque for each of these prayers however in order to interact with the community they are encouraged to pray in congregation. Friday noon is the only time in a week when Muslims must definitely join the congregational prayer in a mosque after which they can continue their work, education or other commitments.
Azan or the call for prayer is a vocal announcement that one can hear from minarets 5 times a day. The call to prayer is made live -even early in the morning- by a person called 'muazzin'. The muazzins are usually chosen from people with loud and beautiful voices and trained over years to make this announcement beautifully and invite people to worship.