The Military Museum


Like the Archeological Museum of İstanbul, the Military Museum too began its existence at the former church of Hagia Irini (Saint Irene) on the grounds of the Topkapı Palace. After the conquest of Constantinople, the church was used for a time as an arsenal, then as a storehouse for old weapons. In 1869, it was converted into a museum consisting of two sections: Mecma-ı Esliha-i Atika (Collection of Antique Weapons) and Mecma-ı Asar-ı Atika (Collection of Antiquities). The museum was known collectively as Müze-i Hümâyûn (Imperial Museum). Subsequently the Museum of Antiquities was moved to the Çinili Köşk (Tiled Pavilion), leaving the collection of antique weapons at Hagia Irini. This collection was first named Esliha-ı Askeriyye Müzesi (Museum of Military Weapons) and then Müze-i Askerî-i Osmânî (Ottoman Military Museum). In 1940, the collection was taken to Anatolia for safekeeping, out of concern that the ongoing World War might spread to Turkey. It was eventually returned to the Maçka Barracks, then placed in the gymnasium of the Harbiye Mektebi (War Academy) in 1955. The Harbiye Barracks were turned into a museum in their entirety in 1967, and the collection has been exhibited there since.


Valikonagi Caddesi, Harbiye, 34298 Istanbul
P: +90 212 233 2720