İznik Mavi Çini Nicea: The Capital of Empires - İznik Mavi Çini
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Nicea: The Capital of Empires

Nicea: The Capital of Empires

3 July 2021

From Alexander the Great to Constantine the First, from Suleiman Shah to Orhan Gazi, Iznik has been the favorite of countless important figures and states throughout history. With its proximity to Istanbul, its fertile lands, and its location by the lake, it has always stood out. In this blog post, we will talk about the empires that have existed in Iznik and the history of this unique city.

Iznik and Christianity

In the year 325, a crucial turning point for Christian history, Iznik hosted the First Council of Nicaea. Emperor Constantine the First attended this meeting, and a 20-article text known as the Nicene Canons regarding Christian feast days was accepted after this Council. Also, the Seventh Council, which convened in the Hagia Sophia of Iznik in 787, further reinforced Iznik's place in Christian history.

Iznik - The First Turkish Capital of Anatolia

The Great Seljuks, having won their first battle against the Byzantine Empire (Battle of Manzikert), accelerated their activities over Anatolia. With the victory in the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, Turks residing in regions such as Iran, Azerbaijan, and Khorasan began migrating to Anatolia. Suleiman Shah from the Seljuk Dynasty took Iznik in 1075, established the Anatolian Seljuk State, and Iznik became the first Turkish capital of Anatolia. However, the capital was changed to Konya when Iznik fell during the First Crusade.

Iznik in the Ottoman Era and the Art of Ceramics

In 1331, Orhan Gazi conquered Iznik, ensuring that the city once again came under Turkish rule after 234 years. After the conquest, Iznik briefly became the capital, later passing to Bilecik. However, as Iznik and Bilecik are located within the borders of Bursa, we often see in sources that Bursa is referred to as the capital between 1326 and 1365.

Throughout history, Iznik has won and lost the title of capital multiple times. However, from the 14th century onwards, with the Ottoman Empire, the city regained its former glory with the art of ceramics. As a result, Iznik has a rich and colorful cultural heritage that extends to today.

Iznik - A Heritage of Culture and History

Iznik, a city that has maintained its importance in every era, served as the capital for many empires and hosted numerous historical events, is one of the rare places where history and culture coexist. With both its natural beauty and its rich historical and cultural heritage, Iznik welcomes many domestic and foreign tourists every year.

With its historical and cultural wealth, Iznik has played an important role in history and made significant contributions to the art of ceramics. You can explore this unique historical and cultural heritage by visiting Iznik. Additionally, you can see in detail how this art is made by visiting our ceramics workshop.

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