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Lala Mustafa Pasha Mosque

Photos and description

Lala Mustafa Pasha mosque is built on a hill towering above the Old Bazaar in Skopje. It is the largest Muslim temple and one of the most well preserved monuments of Islamic architecture in Macedonia. Form of the mosque has not changed significantly since 1492 - the time of construction of this building. The mosque was named after its founder, the Grand vizier of Sultan Selim I, Mustafa Pasha. At the end of the XV century it was owned by four villages around Skopje and couldn't resist the temptation to build on there-century great mosque. It was erected on the site of the old Christian Church of the Holy Saviour. About the founder of the mosque mentions the ornate inscription on the marble plaque which can be seen above the main portal.

The mosque is a one-storey building with a minaret height of 42 meters. In each of the walls of the mosque created 5 Windows. The mosque is a typical example of classical Ottoman architecture. This is evidenced by a clear and correct proportions, a large dome, with a slender minaret, porch with marble columns located on the North side. The attached structure of the turbe (mausoleum) set the sarcophagus where the relics of Mustafa Pasha died in 1519, and one of his daughters - UMI. The mosque is surrounded by a rose garden.

In 1912, the Lala Mustafa Pasha mosque ceased to be used for the purpose, and during the first world war was turned into a military warehouse. In 1963 the building was severely damaged during the earthquake. The mosque began to recover only in 2006 with the financial support of the Turkish government. Its reconstruction was completed in August 2011.