The City of Nicosia (Lefkoşa), Cyprus  -


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Nicosia, Cyprus

Sultan Mahmud II Library

This small building is at the eastern end of the Selimiye Mosque and the exterior view is shown in fig. 18

It was built by Sultan Mahmud II in the early years of the last century and its style of architecture is that of Islam.

Sultan Mahmud II Library
Interior of Sultan Mahmud II Library, Nicosia.

Fig. 18 shows the contrasting styles with the lantern-like nave of the St. Sophia cathedral looming up in the background. It is a one roomed building, with the interior walls decorated with words from the Koran in gilt Arabic letters against a blue background. Here are stored many ancient books, some more than 500 years old, and those exhibited are fine examples of Persian and old Turkish calligraphy.

The vicinity is the nucleus of the ancient city of Nicosia and in the cathedral precincts are three of the oldest houses, the Lapidary Museum, the Chapter House and an old Venetian house, now empty, between the Bedestan and the Municipal market.


  • Dreghorn, W., The Antiquities of Turkish Nicosia, Rustem Publishers, Nicosia

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