Hasan Baba Dervish Lodge and Soup Kitchen

The Hasan Baba Dervish Lodge is located in the Tempe canyon between Larissa and Ampelaika about 20 km. from Larissa. The Tempi canyon starts at the village of Hasan Baba that was a predominantly Turkish village in Ottoman times. Hasan Baba is a pass which is not very far from the Larissa meadows which got this name from the neighboring village called Baba where there was a caravanserai.

Hasan Baba is a little village that was first founded by Turkish dervishes (Urquhart, 1839, p.27). Along with the Hasan Baba Tomb, the Dervish Lodge, the Mosque and the Soup Kitchen that were built in the area at the entrance to the Tempe canyon, the wild beauty of the surrounding area attracts the attention of foreign travellers. Edward Dodwell made a paiting of this Dervish Lodge in 1805 during his travel within Greece between the years 1801 and 1806 (1822, p.193).

The village was formed of 25 Turkish and 2 Rumelian families in 1830 (Urquhart, 1839, p.27). Graf Otto Magnus von Stackelberg, a Baltic German, drew the Tempe valley in 1812 and Kern, who also saw the area in 1899 portrayed it. The mosque at Baba collapsed but the tomb and Dervish Lodge are still standing today. These artifacts should be certified and registered as historical monuments and they should be restored.

 

If we take the date when the Turks conquered Teselya into account it may have been built in the 14

th century. If we take the date when the Turks settled at this region into account, it may have been constructed in the 15th century. There are archive documents in the Republic of Turkey Prime Ministry General Directorate of State Archives which show that the Dervish Lodge, the tomb and the Soup Kitchen are part of the Ghazi Turhan Bey charitable foundations. Turhan Bey was one of the Mounted Advance Guards (Akincilar) of the Ottoman Empire. This information shows the existence of the dervish lodge in the 14th century. These income producing structures of the dervish lodge and the soup kitchen exist in these documents.

 

The Hasan Baba Dervish Lodge and Tomb are the same structures. As it is obvious in their photographs, the structures that have domes were built on flat ground. They were 5.90 mt. x 5.80 mt. and were formed of a tomb that was covered with a dome and the Dervish Lodge building that had a rectangular plan.

 

It is obvious from the painting by Dodwell that there was a mosque that was covered with roof tile in front of the Lodge and the Tomb. The rectangular mosque was later demolished yet its minaret remained standing for a long while. E.Reisinger published a photograph of the Dervish Lodge that was taken by von Lüpke in 1910. That photograph shows that the minaret and the domed tomb can be seen easily and the Dervish Lodge is recognizable in the background. The mosque that should be located next to the minaret is nonexistent. The tomb is surrounded by aged cypress trees.

The same photograph shows the Dervish Lodge next to the front entrance of the tomb and being very low with arched windows. It is estimated from the remaining traces that there was a place with three sections in this place and that it originally had four columns and domes. These estimations can be verified by the information in the essay by E.Vakalopoulos, 1972, about the Hasan Baba Dervish Lodge (Vakalopulos, 1972, pp. 65-84):

"The dervish lodge could be entered after passing through a portico that had three little domes. The portico is placed on four columns. These columns were being sold by the National Bank and they were destroyed; that is why they could not be protected until today."

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Greek officer with the initials K.G.K. visited the tomb in 1890 and wrote:

"There are swords, turbans and two green flags in the tomb. These are the tombs of the two dervishes of Hasan Baba, near his tomb. Hasan Baba is resting within his grave that is one foot higher from the flor. I regretfully heard that the last person of his family who was quite old passed away one or two years ago" (Vakalopoulos, 1972, pp. 65-84).

 

The Vakalopulos essay about the Hasan Baba Dervish Lodge written in 1972 makes the claim that the Dervish Lodge was being used as a barn (Vakalopoulos, 1972, pp. 65-84). Moreover, during the visitation of E.Vakalopoulos; Dimitri Strulias, relying on his father’s words, is aid to have told him that Hasan Baba’s wife is lying on the right side of him and his son is lying on his left.

The west side of the tomb is quite damaged from top to bottom. There is a polished calligraphy inscription of Fetih, a section of Kur’an’ı Kerim. The structure is surrounded by scaffolding.

 

The charitable institution where boilers were placed is still standing at the exterior part of the Dervish Lodge on the southeastern side. The building has a rectangular plan and is covered with a jerkin head. The plaster stove is still within the building. The Soup Kitchen is being used as a chicken coop today.

Beyond the Soup Kitchen and closer to the Kösdem (Pinios) River there were rooms for visitors. Every year, wondrous celebrations took place under the magnificent plane trees along the river. The Hasan Baba Dervish Lodge and the area around it were bought by Dimitrios Strulyas at an unknown date and then they were passed to his sons, Georgios and İoannis. The area where the Dervish Lodge was located was left to his first son. For years, people have just passed by this once famous place but with the new information concerning the Hasan Baba Village, its importance and the function of Hasan Baba and his Dervish Lodge is slowly being revealed.

 

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  • The List Of The Ottoman Artifacts Located In Tirnovi
  • The List Of The Ottoman Artifacts Located In Çatalca
  • The List Of The Ottoman Artifacts Located In Alasonya
  • The List Of The Ottoman Artifacts Located In Baba
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