Museum of Islamic Science and History of Technology

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The Museum of Islamic Science and History of Technology is an impressive and fantastic museum displaying examples of copies of some of the inventions of Islamic Civilization during the creative period between the 9th and 16th centuries. The museum is a unique one in the world, that visitors may see the the evolution of the different scientific branches in Islamic civilization.

The museum was opened in 2008 and is situated in the former Imperial Stables building in Gulhane Park, on the skirts of the Topkapi Palace Museum. It is set on 3,500 square meters exhibition area and showcases a total of 570 samples of tools and devices, as well as model collections. With this specialties, it is the first museum in Turkey, and second in the world after the one in Frankfurt.

Most of these examples of copies were made by the Institute for the History of Arab-Islamic Sciences at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt, and based on the descriptions and pictures in the written sources, and some from the originals of the surviving works.

What to See

The Museum of Islamic Science and Technology stands as a living tribute to an era where intellectual curiosity and innovation propelled humanity forward, leaving an indelible mark on the annals of scientific history.


The Genesis

Established in 2008 under the visionary concept of Prof. Dr. Fuat Sezgin, an esteemed Islamic science historian, the museum unfolds the legacy of Islamic scientists through 12 riveting sections. These encompass astronomy, clocks and marine instruments, war technology, medicine, mining, physics, mathematics and geometry, architecture and city planning, chemistry and optics, geography, and a cinevision screening room.

Exterior

When you enter the museum, a large globe will show up in the garden and you’ll be excited. It is a reconstruction of an important achievements along the Islamic scientific tradition. What is interesting is that the map on the globe is surprisingly has an accuracy, as it was constructed by the order of Caliph al-Ma’mun in the 9th century.

Second unique display in the garden is the Ibn-i Sina Botanical Garden that houses the 26 types of medicinal plants that are mentioned in the second volume of Ibn-i Sina’s al-Kanun fi’t-Tıbb book.

Interior

The museum of two floors. On the first floor, you’ll see loads of maps and map drawings related to Mines, Physics, Mathematics-Geometry, Urbanism and Architecture, Optics, Chemistry and Geography.

On the upstairs you’ll see a Cinevision Hall where you can watch various visuals about the museum that include; Astronomy, Clock Technology, Maritime, Combat Technology and Medicine Department.


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And also in all the exhibition halls of the museum, you’ll see models belonging to the works of Islamic scientists. Some of the must-see examples of copies of some of the inventions of Islamic Civilization include;

  • A copy of the World Map drawn by Al-Idrisi based on the map of Caliph al-Me,
  • Takiyeddin’s Mechanical Clock, from the year 1559,
  • Elephant Clock and Hacamati, from the book of Al-Cezeri (from the year 1200),
  • Abu Said Es-Siczi’s Planetarium,
  • Abdurrahman es-Sufi’s Celestial Sphere,
  • Khidr al-Hucendi’s Usturlab,
  • Minute Scale working by Abdurrahman al-Hazini from the 12th century,
  • Ibn-i Sinai’s Al-Qa’n fi’t Tıbb Medical Book.

The Elephant Clock

Gaze upon the marvels of al-Jazari, the pioneer in cybernetics and robotics. His creation, The Elephant Clock, stands as a symbol of admiration for the universality of Islam, echoing its reach from Spain to the Middle East. Welcoming visitors at the museum’s entrance, this intricate clock invites you into the heart of Islamic scientific excellence.

Astronomy Section

Journey through time in the Astronomy Section, where miniatures of significant Islamic observatories, astrolabes, world globes, and measuring sets unveil the celestial wonders observed by Islamic scholars.

Clock and Marine Section

Uncover the intricacies of timekeeping in the Clock and Marine Section. Witness sun dials casting shadows to indicate time, marvel at clocks designed by al-Jazari and al-Biruni, and explore marine equipment that once navigated the seas during the Ottoman Period.

Physics Section

Delve into the innovations showcased in the Physics Section, presenting the ingenious devices described in al-Jazari’s “Kitabü’l-Hıyel.” From al-Biruni’s pycnometer measuring specific gravity to helical pumps, piston pumps, perpetual motion machines, scissors-shaped elevators, and block-and-tackle pulley systems, this section illuminates the scientific prowess of Islamic scholars.

Visiting Hours & Admissions

Opening Hours

Open every day between 09:00 – 17:30

Ticket counters close 1 hour before the museum closing time.

Ticket Price

Please double check hours and admissions from muze.gen.tr


How to Get to the Museum

Location

You’ll find the Museum of Islamic Science and History of Technology inside the Gulhane Park (former stables building), in the Sirkeci neighborhood of the Fatih district. Situated just on the skirts of Topkapi Palace Museum. See the location map.

Transportation

The most practical way to get to Gulhane Park is via Bagcilar-Kabatas tram (T1 line).

  • The closest tram stop is Gulhane.
  • From Taksim, take the funicular to Kabatas (from taksim Square) or funicular to Karakoy (from Tunel square) and than take the tram.
  • If you stay at the Sultanahmet hotels, than you easily walk to the museum.
  • You can walk from Eminonu as well.

Contact Details

Address: Gülhane Parkı Has Ahırlar Binası, Fatih, Istanbul
Tel: +90 212 528 80 65


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