The Famous Turkish Traveller Evliya Çelebi Describes the Hospital
The famous Turkish traveller Evliya Çelebi, who visited Edirne in 1652, mentioned the complex as 'There is a hospital which can hardly be described either with words of mouth or of pencil’. The famous traveller also made the following interesting descriptions:
“The complex, which is in the middle of a vineyard, has such a high dome extending into the sky that its top is open like a glass case of a hammam (Turkish bath). In this open area, there is a small dome on six thin marble pillars like a Kiyaniyan crown. The artist, the craftsman, placed a flag on a kind of iron stick polished by pure gold on the very top of this small dome. That flag turns to the direction of the blowing wind. It has an unusual outlook. The lower big dome is eight cornered. There are eight arches even in this one arched dome. Under each arch, there is a winter room and two windows in each of them. One of the windows overlooks a small garden with roses and trees, while the other one overlooks the big pool and the fountain in the middle of this big dome. In front of these eight winter rooms, there are also eight summer rooms in this big dome.
When the clear water spurts from the fountains around the big pool under this big dome (three sides of which were constructed of marble window-lattice) and enters the pool, the clear water from sprays reaches the middle of the arched dome.
This carefully and painstakingly constructed hospital is home to many rich and poor, young and elderly, who suffer from various illnesses.
When the lovers, who fell into the love sea of Edirne, increase in number in some rooms during crazy spring time, they are brought to this madhouse upon the order of the doctor, chained to their beds with silver and golden chains and each one lies on his/her bed just like roaring lions. Some of them grumble certain words while watching the pool and the fountain, some others listen to the countless songs of birds in the rose garden, vineyard and melon field around that arched dome and start screaming with the tuneless voice of a mad.
In spring time, various flowers such as jasmine, carnation, tulip and hyacinth are given to the patients and by the odor of them patients are healed. However, when these flowers are given to the mad, they either eat or step on them. Some of them watch the fruit trees and grass by crying out various meaningless sounds such as ah daha hel hope pe pohe peko.
In the Deceased and Blessed Bayezid Veli Hazretleri Vakfiye (the book of regulations), ten vocalists and instrumentalists are charged. Three of them are vocalists, one of them is the flutiest, one is the violinist, one is the flageolet, one is the player of dulcimer, one is the gipsy dancer and one is the player of ut. They come three times a week and give short concerts to the lunatics and patients. They are relaxed and pleased by the sound of oriented orchestra with order of God. In fact, makams (the modes of Turkish music) such as neva, rast, dügah, segah, çargah, suzinak are common to them. Also, zengüle and buselik makams nourish the spirits of the patients."