Edirne ,Greek Αδριανούπολις / Adrianoupolis , is a city
in the northwestern Turkish province of
Edirne in the region of East
Thrace, close to Turkey's borders with
Greece and Bulgaria. Edirne
served as the third capital city of the
Ottoman Empire from 1363 to
Constantinople (present-day Istanbul) became the
empire's fourth and final capital. The city's estimated population in
2014 was 165,979.
2.2 Medieval period
2.3 Modern period
3 Ecclesiastical history
5 Points of interest
8.2 High schools
11 Twin cities
12 Notable people
13 See also
15 Further reading
16 External links
The city was founded as Hadrianopolis (Ἁδριανούπολις in
Greek), named for the
Roman Emperor Hadrian. This name is still used
Modern Greek (Αδριανούπολη). The Turkish name
Edirne derives from the Greek name. The name Adrianople was used in
English until the Turkish adoption of Latin alphabet in 1928 made
Edirne the internationally recognized name. Bulgarian: Одрин,
Albanian: Edrenë, Slovene: Odrin and Serbian: Једрене /
Jedrene are adapted forms of the name Hadrianopolis or of its Turkish
version; see also its other names.
The area around
Edirne has been the site of numerous major battles and
sieges, from the days of the ancient Greeks. The vagaries of the
border region between Asia and Europe gives rise to Edirne's historic
claim to be the most frequently contested spot on the globe.
According to Greek mythology, Orestes, son of king Agamemnon, built
this city as Orestias, at the confluence of the Tonsus (Toundja) and
the Ardiscus (Arda) with the Hebrus (Maritza). The city was
(re)founded eponymously by the
Hadrian on the site of a
previous Thracian settlement known as Uskadama, Uskudama, Uskodama or
Uscudama. It was the capital of the Bessi, or of the Odrysians.
Hadrian developed it, adorned it with monuments, changed its name to
Hadrianopolis after himself (which would be corrupted into
Adrianopolis, Anglicised as Adrianople), and made it the capital of
the Roman province of Thrace.
Licinius was defeated there by
Constantine I in 323, and Emperor
Valens was killed by the
378 during the
Battle of Adrianople
Battle of Adrianople (378).
Historical image of Cihannüma Kasrı (Panoramic Pavilion), part of
Edirne Palace complex
In 813, the city was temporarily seized by Khan Krum of
moved its inhabitants to the Bulgarian lands towards the north of the
During the existence of the
Latin Empire of Constantinople, the
Crusaders were decisively defeated by the Bulgarian Emperor
Battle of Adrianople
Battle of Adrianople (1205). In 1206 Adrianople and its territory
was given to the Byzantine aristocrat
Theodore Branas as a hereditary
fief by the Latin regime. Later Theodore Komnenos, Despot of
Epirus, took possession of it in 1227, but three years later was
defeated at Klokotnitsa by Asen, Emperor of the Bulgarians.
In 1369, the city was conquered by the Ottoman sultan Murad I. He
renamed it "Edirne".
The city remained the Ottoman capital for 84 years until 1453, when
Mehmed II moved the capital to
Constantinople (present-day Istanbul).
Edirne is famed for its many mosques, domes, minarets, and palaces
from the Ottoman period.
Edirne in the first quarter of the 20th century. In the background is
the Selimiye Mosque
Under Ottoman rule,
Edirne was the principal city of the
administrative unit, the eponymous Eyalet of Edirne, and after land
reforms in 1867, the Vilayet of Edirne. Sultan Mehmed II, the
conqueror of Constantinople, was born in Edirne. It was here that he
fell under the influence of some Hurufis dismissed by Taş Köprü
Zade in the Şakaiki Numaniye as "Certain accursed ones of no
significance", who were burnt as heretics by a certain Mahmud
Mehmed IV left the palace in
Constantinople and died in Edirne
During his exile in the Ottoman Empire, the Swedish king Charles XII
stayed in the city during most of 1713.
Bahá'u'lláh, the founder of the Bahá'í Faith, lived in
1863 to 1868. He was exiled there by the
Ottoman Empire before being
banished further to the Ottoman penal colony in Akka. He referred to
Edirne in his writings as the "Land of Mystery".
Edirne was a sanjak centre during the Ottoman period and was bound to,
Rumeli Eyalet and
Silistre Eyalet before becoming a
provincial capital of the Eyalet of
Edirne at the beginning of the
19th century; until 1878, the Eyalet of
Edirne comprised the sanjaks
of Edirne, Tekfurdağı, Gelibolu, Filibe, and İslimye.
Edirne was briefly occupied by imperial Russian troops in 1829 during
Greek War of Independence
Greek War of Independence and in 1878 during the Russo-Turkish War
of 1877–1878. The city suffered a fire in 1905. In 1905 it had about
80,000 inhabitants, of whom 30,000 were Turks; 22,000 Greeks; 10,000
Bulgarians; 4,000 Armenians; 12,000 Jews; and 2,000 more citizens of
unclassified ethnic/religious backgrounds.
Edirne was a vital fortress defending Ottoman
Eastern Thrace during the
Balkan Wars of 1912–13. It was briefly
occupied by the Bulgarians in 1913, following the Siege of Adrianople.
The Great Powers–Britain, Italy, France, and Russia–forced the
Ottoman Empire to cede
Bulgaria at the end of First Balkan
War, which created a political scandal in the Ottoman government in
Edirne was a former capital of the Empire), leading to
the 1913 Ottoman coup d'état. Although it was victorious in the coup,
Committee of Union and Progress
Committee of Union and Progress was unable to keep Edirne, but
Enver Pasha (who proclaimed himself the "second conqueror of
Edirne", after Murad I), it was retaken from the Bulgarians soon after
Second Balkan War
Second Balkan War began.
It was occupied by the Greeks between the
Treaty of Sèvres
Treaty of Sèvres in 1920
and their defeat at the end of the Greco-Turkish War, also known as
the Western Front of the larger Turkish War of Independence, in 1922.
According to the 2007 census,
Edirne Province had a population of
382,222 inhabitants. The city is a thriving center of commerce for
woven textiles, silks, carpets and agricultural products.
Panoramic view of the city from Selimiye Mosque.
Ottoman külliye and hospital built by Bayezid II
Adrianople was made the seat of a Greek metropolitan and of a
Gregorian Armenian bishop. Adrianople is also the centre of a
Bulgarian diocese, but not recognized and deprived of a bishop. The
city also had some Protestants. The Latin Catholics, foreigners for
the most part, and not numerous, were dependent on the
vicariate-apostolic of Constantinople. At Adrianople itself were the
parish of St. Anthony of Padua (Minors Conventual) and a school for
girls conducted by the
Sisters of Charity
Sisters of Charity of Agram. In the suburb of
Karaağaç were a church (Minor Conventuals), a school for boys
(Assumptionists) and a school for girls (Oblates of the Assumption).
Each of its mission stations, at
Tekirdağ and Alexandroupoli, had a
school (Minor Conventuals), and there was one at
Around 1850, from the standpoint of the Eastern Catholic Churches,
Adrianople was the residence of a Bulgarian vicar-apostolic for the
4,600 Eastern Catholics of the Ottoman vilayet (province) of Thrace
and after 1878 - of the principality of Bulgaria. They had 18 parishes
or missions, 6 of which were in the principality, with 20 churches or
chapels, 31 priests, of whom 6 were
Assumptionists and 6 were
Resurrectionists; 11 schools with 670 pupils. In Adrianople itself
were only a very few United Bulgarians, with an Episcopal church of
St. Elias, and the churches of St. Demetrius and Sts. Cyril and
Methodius. The last is served by the Resurrectionists, who have also a
college of 90 pupils. In the suburb of Karaağaç, the Assumptionists
have a parish and a seminary with 50 pupils. Besides the Eastern
Catholic Bulgarians, the above statistics included the Greek Catholic
missions of Malgara (now Malkara) and Daoudili (now Davuteli village
in Malkara), with 4 priests and 200 faithful, because from the civil
point of view belonged to the Bulgarian Vicariate.
Later however, the Roman Catholic diocese was discontinued, and exists
only in name as a titular metropolitan archbishopric, under the full
name Hadrianopolis in Haemimonto to distinguish it from several other
titular sees named Hadrianopolis.
Edirne has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate
classification: Cfa) with long, hot summers and cold and occasionally
Climate data for Edirne
Record high °C (°F)
Average high °C (°F)
Daily mean °C (°F)
Average low °C (°F)
Record low °C (°F)
Average precipitation mm (inches)
Average rainy days
Mean monthly sunshine hours
Mean daily sunshine hours
Source: Turkish State Meteorological Service 
Points of interest
Grand Synagogue of Edirne
Situated 7 km (4.3 mi) near to the Greek and 20 km
(12 mi) to the Bulgarian border,
Edirne is famed for its many
mosques, domes and minarets. The Selimiye Mosque, built in 1575 and
designed by Turkey's greatest master architect,
Mimar Sinan (c.
1489/1490–1588), is one of the most important monuments in the city.
It has the highest minarets in Turkey, at 70.90 m (232.6 ft)
and a cupola 3 or 4 ft (0.91 or 1.22 m) higher than that of
Hagia Sophia, the Byzantine Orthodox Cathedral (now museum) in
Istanbul. Carrying the name of the then reigning Ottoman Sultan Selim
II (r. 1566–1574), this mosque futures Turkish marble handicrafts,
and it is covered with valuable tiles and fine paintings. Another
notable mosques are Eski Cami (Old Mosque), and Burmalı Cami
(Serpent Mosque), aka Üç Şerefeli Mosque.
Edirne has three historic covered bazaars: Arasta, next to Selimiye
Mosque, Bedesten next to Eski Cami and Ali Paşa Çarşısı (Ali
Besides the mosques, there are visitor attractions in Edirne, all
reflecting its rich past. The most prominent place being the Edirne
Palace (Ottoman Turkish: Saray-ı Cedid-i Amire for "New Imperial
Palace") in Sarayiçi quarter, built during the reign of
Murad II (r.
1421–1444). Although the buildings of the palace and its bath (Kum
Kasrı Hamamı) are in ruined form, the palace gate and the palace
kitchen facility are restored. The Kasr-ı Adalet ("Justice Castle"),
built as part of the palace complex, stands intact next to the small
Fatih Bridge over the Tunca river.
Another notable building in the area is the Trakya University's
Külliye Health Museum, an important monument with its
complex construction comprising many facilities used in those times.
Balkan Wars Memorial Cemetery is located close to the Edirne
Palace, with an unknown soldier monument featuring an Ottoman soldier
in front of its entrance.
The historic Grand Synagogue of Edirne, abandoned and ruined, was
restored and re-opened in March 2015. A Roman Catholic and
two Bulgarian Orthodox churches are found in the city.
Edirne has several historic arch bridges crossing over the rivers
Meriç and Tundzha, which flow around west and south of the city.
There are caravansaries, like the Rustem Pasha and Ekmekcioglu Ahmet
Pasha caravansaries, which were designed to host travelers, in the
Karaağaç railway station
Karaağaç railway station hosts today, after
redevelopment, the Trakya University's Faculty of Fine Arts in
Karaağaç suburb of Edirne. Next to it, the Treaty of Lausanne
Monument and Museum are situated.
Oil-wrestling at Kırkpınar
The traditional oil-wrestling tournament called Kırkpınar, is held
every year in June.. Kakava, an internation festival
Roma people is held on 5 May each year.
A cultural partnership with
Germany has been started in
2006. The goal is to exchange pupils and students to improve their
cultural skills and understanding.
Edirne is well known for the local dishes. "Ciğer tava" (breaded and
deep-fried liver) served often with cacık, diluted yogurt with
chopped cucumber. Also, locally-made Marzipan, which has a different
recipe from standard Marzipan, is one of traditional desserts of
Handmade brooms with a mirror in them are one of the cultural images
of the city and a central marriage tradition. Miniature versions can
still be bought in gift shops.
Ali Paşa Çarşısı (Ali Pasha Bazaar).
Edirne's economy largely depends on agriculture. 73% of the working
population work in agriculture, fishing, forests, hunting. There are
lots of things that are cultivated here. Its lowlands are productive.
The field crop cultivation has developed so much here. Corn, sugarbeet
and sunflower are the first. Melon, watermelon and viniculture are
advanced. For the last decade, the agricultural products have doubled.
Corn, rice, sunflower, sugarbeet, tomato, eggplant, melon, watermelon,
grape are cultivated so much.
The through highway with an important role in global transport that
connects Europe to Middle East and Anatolian to
Also, the existence of many historical and natural touristic places
and events lead the fact that tourism has become a leading component
of the economic growth of the city in recent years.
Industry has also been developing. Agriculture-based industries
(agro-industries) are especially important for the city's economy.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (June
Main building of Trakya University
Faculty of Fine Arts building of Trakya University, originally built
as Karaağaç railway station.
Trakya University, which is linked with Loerrach University through
Erasmus programme of the EU.
Beykent Educational Institutions
80th Year of Republic Anatolian High School (80. Yıl Cumhuriyet
Anadolu Lisesi in Turkish)
Edirne Anatolian Teacher Training High School (
Öğretmen Lisesi in Turkish: It has been transformed into Edirne
Social Sciences High School)
Edirne Anatolian Technical High School (
Edirne Anadolu Teknik Lisesi
Edirne Beykent High School of Science (Özel
Edirne Beykent Fen
Edirne Beykent High School of Anatolian (Özel
Edirne Beykent Anadolu
Edirne High School (Anatolian High School) (
Edirne Lisesi in Turkish)
Edirne Ilhami Ertem High School (
Edirne İlhami Ertem Lİsesi in
Edirne Industrial Vocational High School (
Edirne Endüstri Meslek
Lisesi in Turkish)
Edirne Milli Piyango Trade Profession High School (
Piyango Ticaret Meslek Lisesi)
Edirne Suleyman Demirel Science & Maths High School (
Lisesi in Turkish)
Edirne Yildirim Anatolian High School (
Edirne Anadolu Lisesi -
Yıldırım Anadolu Lisesi in Turkish)
Edirne Fine Arts High School (
Edirne Guzel Sanatlar Lisesi in Turkish)
Calligraphic inscription at the Eski Cami (Old Mosque) in Edirne
Interior of Eski Cami
Sts. Constantine and Helena Bulgarian Church
Fatih Bridge over the Tunca River, with the Kasr-ı Adalet (Justice
Pavilion) tower seen in the background
A house in
Edirne from the Ottoman period
Loerrach International Germany
Bayezid I (1360–1403), Ottoman sultan from 1389 to 1402
Mahmud I (1696–1754), Ottoman sultan from 1730 to 1754
Mehmed the Conqueror
Mehmed the Conqueror (1432–1481), Ottoman sultan who conquered
Costantinople (today Istanbul)
Mustafa II (1664–1703), Ottoman sultan from 1695 to 1703
Osman III (1699–1757), Ottoman sultan from 1754 to 1757
Şahin Giray (1745-1787), Last khan of Crimea
Caleb Afendopolo (before 1430-1499), Jewish polyhistor
Athanasius I of
Constantinople (1230–1310), Ecumenical Patriarch of
Hagop Baronian (1843–1891), Ottoman Armenian writer, satirist,
Elijah Bashyazi (c. 1420–1490), Karaite Jewish hakham
Theodore Branas, Byzantine general
Nikephoros Bryennios (ethnarch), Byzantine general
Abraham ben Raphael Caro, 18th century Ottoman rabbis
Dionysius V of
Constantinople (1820-1891), Ecumenical Patriarch of
Joseph Halévy (1827–1917),Ottoman born Jewish-French Orientalist
Abdulcelil Levni (died 1732), Ottoman court painter and miniaturist
Neşâtî (?–1674), pen name of an Ottoman poet
Georgi Valkovich (1833–1892), Bulgarian physician, diplomat and
Yirmisekiz Mehmed Çelebi
Yirmisekiz Mehmed Çelebi (died 1732), Ottoman statesman and
Cem Adrian (born 1980), Turkish singer-songwriter, author, producer
and film director
Şevket Süreyya Aydemir (1897–1976), Turkish writer, intellectual,
Namik Haluk Baskinci (1957–1995), Turkish architect, engineer and
Atılay Canel (born 1955), Turkish football coach
Cavit Erdel (1884–1933), Ottoman Army officer and Turkish Army
Hüsrev Gerede (1884-1962), Ottoman and Turkish Army officer,
politician and diplomat
Ragıp Gümüşpala (1897-1964), 11th Chief of the General Staff of
the Turkish Armed Forces
Acun Ilıcalı (born 1969), Turkish television personality and
Haşim İşcan (1898-1968), Turkish high school teacher, province
governor and the first elected mayor of Istanbul
Kemal Kerinçsiz (born 1960), Turkish ultra-nationalist lawyer
Özlem Kolat (born 1984), Turkish classical clarinet player
Michael Petkov (1850-1921), Bulgarian Eastern Catholic priest
Muharrem Korhan Yamaç (born 1972), Paralympics, world and European
champion disabled sport shooter
Nikos Zachariadis (1903 – 1973), General Secretary of the Communist
Party of Greece
Gökberk Ergeneman (born 1995) National Tennis Player
List of battles of Adrianople
List of treaties of Adrianople
^ "HGK" (PDF). General Command of Mapping.
^ "In 1363 the Ottoman capital moved from Bursa to Edirne, although
Bursa retained its spiritual and economic importance." Ottoman Capital
Bursa. Official website of Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the
Republic of Turkey. Retrieved 19 December 2014.
^ Keegan, John (1993). A History of Warfare. Random House.
pp. 70–71. ISBN 0-7126-9850-7.
^ The History of Rome, Volume 4 by Theodor Mommsen, 2009, page 53:
"... defeated the
Bessi in their mountains, took their capital
Uscudama (Adrianople), and compelled them to submit to the Roman
^ Hupchick, Dennis (2017). The Bulgarian-Byzantine Wars for Early
Medieval Balkan Hegemony : silver-lined skulls and blinded
armies. US: Palgrave Macmillan. p. 107.
^ Saint-Guillain, G. (1216) Identities and Allegiances in the Eastern
Mediterranean after 1204, Routledge, p. 66
^ "It served as the capital of the
Ottoman Empire from 1413 until 1458
and flourished as an administrative, commercial, and cultural centre."
"Edirne" Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 19 December 2014
^ John Kingsley Birge, The Bektashi Order of Dervishes, 1982 (p 60 -
^ "Adrianopel" in Nordisk familjebok (2nd edition, 1904)
^ "Bahá'í Reference Library - The Kitáb-i-Aqdas, Page 196".
Reference.bahai.org. 31 December 2010. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
^ "Edirne". Turkish State Meteorological Service. Retrieved 2
September 2016. [permanent dead link]
^ a b Edirne: Eski Cami - Ulu Cami
^ "Üç Şerefeli Cami" (in Turkish).
Edirne Vergi Dairesi
Başkanlığı. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
^ "Saraylar" (in Turkish).
Edirne Vergi Dairesi Başkanlığı.
Retrieved 9 May 2015.
^ a b "Anıtlar" (in Turkish).
Edirne Vergi Dairesi Başkanlığı.
Retrieved 9 May 2015.
Edirne Sinagogu 46 yıl sonra yeniden ibadete açıldı". Sabah (in
Turkish). 26 March 2015. Retrieved 27 March 2015.
^ "Büyük Sinagog'da 46 yıl sonra ilk ibadet".
CNN Türk (in
Turkish). 26 March 2015. Retrieved 27 March 2015.
^ Özmen, Engin (25 March 2015). "Edirne'de Büyük Sinagog
Hürriyet (in Turkish). Retrieved 27 March
Edirne Anıtları-Lozan Anıtı" (in Turkish).
Edirne Vergi Dairesi
Başkanlığı. Retrieved 15 May 2015.
Gökbilgin, M. Tayyib (1991). "Edirne". Encyclopaedia of Islam, Volume
2 (2nd ed.). Leiden: Brill. pp. 683–686.
Wikisource has the text of a 1911
Encyclopædia Britannica article
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Edirne.
Edirne travel guide from Wikivoyage
Photographs and information about Edirne,
Edirne Web Portal
Edirne Weather Forecast Information
Photographs of the town and monuments taken by Disk Osseman
Awarded "EDEN - European Destinations of Excellence" non traditional
tourist destination 2008
Edirne Province of Turkey
List of Provinces by Region
West Black Sea
East Black Sea
Central East Anatolia
Metropolitan municipalities are bolded.
Coordinates: 41°40′N 26°34′E / 41.667°N 26.567°E /