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Ulu Cami

Prominently positioned on Atatürk Caddesi is the huge Ulu Cami, which is completely Seljuk in style and easily the most imposing of Bursa's mosques. Yıldırım Beyazıt funded the monumental building in 1396. His original pledge – following victory over the Crusaders in the Battle of Nicopolis – was to build 20 new mosques. His grandiose plans eventually got watered down to one mosque with 20 small domes, but despite the design trade-off, Ulu Cami is still a bold architectural statement. A minaret of daunting girth augments the 20 domes of the exterior, while inside the 'bigger is better' theme continues with immense portals and a forest of square pillars. Notice the fine wooden carvings on the mimber (pulpit) and the preacher's chair, as well as the calligraphy on the walls. According to legend, the tradition of Karagöz shadow puppet theatre began when the Ulu Cami was constructed.

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