Islamic Gardens with a Special Emphasis on the Ottoman Paradise Gardens:The Sense of Place between Imagery and Reality

Burcu Alarslan ULUDAS 1 * , Fatos ADILOGLU 2 *

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Paradise represents beauty and happiness in almost every culture. It has contributed to shape the history of mankind and colored public perception. This paper explores paradise gardens in Ottoman culture. The research unfolds the relevance of gardens to paradise imagery. The construction of paradise in Qur‟an frames and sets the trajectory of analysis. The investigation is furthered with reflections of the imagery on the decorative arts focusing on the relationship between garden and city in the Ottoman period and engages with the concept of Ottoman city and addresses the garden-city structure of Istanbul exemplifying the earthly projections. The aim here is to examine how the abstract perception of the heaven concept is being concretized through the Ottoman cities and gardens. To find answers to this, the study directs the attention to the sense of place originating from the images of paradise gardens and its influence on Turks especially following their conversion to Islam as depicted in various forms in the spaces of everyday life. The paper concludes by providing a survey for subject enthusiasts, including a way of thinking and a point of departure for various studies in interdisciplinary fields.


Paradise imagery Qur‟an frames Turkish decorative arts Visual culture Garden city Istanbul.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, Volume 1, Issue 4, pp. 44-96

Published Online: 24 Oct 2011

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