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  • Writer's pictureYaman

Karakaş (Caracach) Mansion

My favorite part of my Burgaz island project is the feedback from my dear readers. Thanks to this interaction, new discoveries emerge.

I carelessly interpreted the T.Caracachoglu postcard I shared the other day as Karacaoğlu. A light bulb went on over my head with the warning that his surname might be Karakaşoğlu. I immediately started researching Karakaş Mansion, which draws attention with its Lotus motif entrance landing roof, at 37 Gönüllü Street. I learned that the wooden structure, which bears traces of Far East architecture as well as Art Nouveau features, was purchased by engineer Todor Karakaş in 1951. Here is the letter "T" we are looking for and the surname "Karakaş" :)

Reha Günay - Living Wooden Houses of Istanbul Islands, Karaşkas Mansion

Thinking that we can find another clue in the Burgazada Greek Cemetery, when I took a look at Orhan Türker's book From Antigoni to Burgaz (Antigoni'den Burgaz'a) for the relevant details, I found the following name and information in the registry kept for the burials in the cemetery on the top of the island.

Yoakim Karakas

Born: 1875

Age: 82

Died: 26.6.1957

Cause of death: Heart attack.

In addition, the names of those whose tombstones can be read today include Yeorgios Karakas and Kurstantea Karakas. Although I am not certain, I guess that all these persons mentioned belong to the same family.

(Note: Karakaş family in the old Muslim cemetery is different).

Islands Architectural Heritage Database - Karakaş Mansion

Let's continue to convey the history and architectural features of Karakaş Mansion from Zeynep Aydemir's Master's Thesis on Facade Arrangements and Decorations in Burgazada Residences (Burgazada Konutlarında Cephe Düzenlemeleri ve Bezemeleri).


Dating to the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, the mansion was registered to the painter Yvon (August 17, 1930), the daughter of French national Henri Finler and the wife of lawyer Ferit Rahsam, and it was first sold to engineer Todor Karakaş (September 21, 1951). The mansion, which was ruined over time due to neglect, was extensively repaired by its last owner.


Located on an area of ​​943 m2, the 3-storey building with a basement tower and lightning rod, together with the attic, rises on a masonry basement. The masonry pillars rising from the terrace, which is reached by a single-armed diagonal staircase parallel to the building, are supported by the arch-arched roof. Located on the axis of the building, this section is taken forward from the mass. The roof with ogive (Kashkemer) rises up to slightly exceed the level of the 1st floor balcony. The ground floor terrace, which is reached after this section, was decorated with glass in the last restoration.

is coated. There are three rectangular openings on the ground floor, with a door on the axis. Four masonry posts rising from the terrace carry the first floor balcony opening. There are rectangular windows with one wide eaves on the side facades.

The groups consisting of a door and a window, which are considered far from each other on the right and left of the 1st floor, open to the balcony in an asymmetrical position. The windows of these groups are located near the corners.

Two wooden posts rising from the 1st floor carry the gable roof with wide eaves and triangular pediments. Three square-section wooden elements rising from the right and left sides of this balcony form four triangular spaces and extend to the furrows. The triangular pediment on the roof is decorated by dividing it into geometric areas with laths. There are double skylights in the part of the façade behind the pediment.


The cast-iron stair railings stand out with their curved and floral ornaments. The window eaves on the lateral façades of the ground floor are handled quite wide and are carried with wooden ribs. The laths coming out of the point where the eaves meet the façade cut the wooden chest and end in the form of arrowheads. The cast irons of the windows are adorned with “c” curves by moving forward towards the eaves in the upper parts.

The corner fillings of the Kashkemer, barrel-vaulted roof are filled with sliced ​​and semicircular wooden pieces. Geometric shapes were created under the pediment with the decoupage technique. The forehead of the kashkamer is decorated with geometric ornaments and festoons and finished with volutes.

An arrowhead shaped ornament is used on the top of the kashkamer. The use of kashkamer in the building reminded of the orientalist style.

The wooden balcony railings on the 1st floor are decorated with ring-shaped decorations. There are wooden shutters in the door openings. The corner fillings of the wooden pillars carrying the gable roof were formed by decoupage in circular lines and there is a triangular frieze on it.

Circular sliced ​​festoons hang from the gable roof. On the forehead, there are decoupage geometric motifs in the form of a six-armed star. In the middle of the triangular pediment, there is an intertwined use of geometric and flower motifs.

It is possible to say that the structure, which carries the influence of art-nouveau with its corner fillings and decorations on the roof, and orientalist style with its cash arch, is eclectic.

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