Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

This is the first order of the day, after all this is the first sight I saw upon jumping off the bus.  The Mardin Museum is not-to-be missed,  the mansion or church-looking building is the backdrop of the statue of Kemal Ataturk at the very center of the old city, along the Cumhuriyet Cad. with the big parking lot in front.

The building of the museum was originally constructed as a Syriac catholic patriarchate by Antakya’s patriarch Ignatius Banni but converted several times for different uses prior to becoming a museum.  It served as military barracks, cooperative building, health center, police station, until the government bought the property in 1988, did a restoration, and then relocated the old museum from the Zinciriye Madrasa to this beautifully restored building.   

The museum opened to the public in 1995.

The new museum building is completely made of cut limestone. There are unique ornaments on the internal and external vaults, arches, rails and column heads. On its three floors of exhibition halls are displays of artefacts of different dynasty.  

Old coins from Artukid, Byzantine and Ottoman periods, Seljuk pots and ceramics dugged from nearby Hasankeyf, collection of Roman glasses, mosaics,  vases, steles,  figurines, busts, jewelries, ceremonial masks, Assyrian vessels.  A separate hall for all the objects found around the Mardin mountains, some vases and interesting terracotta animal and female figurines from Chalcolithic period (5500-3000BC), toy cars from the same period, a collection of bronze age (3000-2000BC) spearheads, and so many other objects.

Entry Fee is TL5 from the friendly lady at the booth and the security staff at the gate are courteous as well.

I was thinking of heading next to Zinciriye Museum but it’s up further the hill, so I have got to find the nearest sight – the Meryem Ana Kilisesi - and then crawl slowly to the upper hill onto the foot of the castle or fortress.

A hybird chicken(?) wandering around the terrace of Mardin Museum.


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