Selimye Mosque, Northern Cyprus

Selimiye Mosque is located in Northern Nicosia. It is housed in the largest and oldest surviving gothic church in Cyprus possibly constructed on the site of an earlier Byzantine church. Due to the building's large scale, lack of money and various historical events it took 150 years for the cathedral to be built and still, it was never entirely completed since the southwest tower and the portico's upper floor were never constructed.

The cathedral's first construction phase began during the first years of Frankish rule (possibly in 1209). In November 1326 the cathedral's official inauguration took place. With Nicosia's occupation by the Ottomans (1570), the cathedral was turned into a mosque and two minarets were added onto the building's west part. The cathedral's rich sculptural decoration was destroyed and so were the frescoes, the sculptures and the vitraux depicting scenes from the Old and New Testament. Funerary tombstones of various Lusignan kings were also destroyed. 

In August 1954 the monument was renamed to Selimye mosque in honor of sultan Selim II who ruled at the time of Cyprus' conquest by the Ottomans.

Thanks to Leslie of Turkey! :) 

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