The Nusretiye Mosque was commissioned by Sultan Mahmud II, and was built on a site originally occupied by the Tophane-i Emire Arabcılar Kışlası Mosque. Completed in 1826, the architectural plans were designed by Kirko Baylan, from the notable Balyan family who were responsible for many Ottoman buildings of this period.
A beautiful example of baroque architecture, the mosque was built on a square plan. The mosque’s one central dome is 33 meters tall, made of granite, and supported by four round arches. Around the central dome are a number of turrets. The mosque has two two-tiered minarets and its inscription is surrounded by decorative work in the Empire style.
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.