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TURKISH JERUSALEM (1516-1917) - page 19 / 36





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Turkish Jerusalem (1516-1917)

After the reign of Abdülhamid I, the Ottoman Sultans engraved the tughras also on buildings. This was done as a symbol of patronage. The earliest Tughra inscription is of Sultan Ahmed III (1703-1730) in Istanbul. Another early Tughra is from Sultan Mahmud I. (1730-1754) on the city gate Belgrad but which was transported by Austrian Field Marshall Laudon to Vienna as a war booty.

The Tughra served in those cases as a kind of State symbol (Coat of arms). A modern Coat of Arms, inspired by European ones such as the British Coat of Arms was created in the 19th century. Sultan Abdul Hamid II adopted the final shape on April 17, 1882. It includes two flags: one symbolizing the Ottoman dynasty which has a crescent and a star on red base and the flag of Islamic Caliph which has crescent and a star on a green base.

There are 16 inscriptions with a Tughra. The earliest Tughra is from the year 1224/1810 and is located in Jaffa and it bears the name of Sultan Mahmud II.

There are only 2 Coat of arms, these are located in Akka’s Clock Tower and other one in a Hospital in Jerusalem. The coat of Arms in Akka is very beautiful and detailed.

2.6 List of Signatures of Tile Artisans in Haram al-Sharif (Table 7) Qubbat as-Sakhra has been covered by tiles during the reign of Sultan Süleyman. In 1233 (1817) during the renovation works of Sultan Mahmud II., the tiles were renewed. The artisans who have executed this works have put their signatures on tiles in different places; the tiles contain a short invocation and the name of the person who had made him and in most cases also a year. Most of these tiles were removed to the Islamic Museum during the renovations works in 1959-1964. Van Berchem has recorded nearly all of these tiles. Table 7 gives a list of these tiles.


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