Observatory, is a unique organization in Turkey, was annexed to Boğaziçi
University on the basis of cabinet executive order 41 on 28 March 1983
and has acquired an institutionalstatus, namely KANDILLI OBSERVATORY
AND EARTHQUAKE RESEARCH INSTITUTE (KOERI).
From 1868 to today, the development of the Observatory and the researches
conducted can be summarized into three important periods:
1868-1909-1911-1982, and from 1982 to the present: an Academic
1868-1909 RASATHANE-İ AMİRE:
Istanbul Rasathanesi, also known as Rasathane-i Amire, in
history of Turkish science, was established in 1868 across the Della
Suda pharmacy in the Pera Street (presently Istiklal Caddesi). In the
beginning, it was not an astronomical observatory, but housed the
central meteorology office. Observations were performed on the 74 m
high Pera hill. Later as it was apparent from Salhane, which is
the astronomy calendar published by the observatory covering the
planets, cornets, latitude settings, and transformations from star
time to sun time, that the meteorology office made an effort to be an
The information collected from Observation archives indicate that,
engineers and navigators used instruments for the determination of
magnetic declination and accurate time. These instruments were later
moved to a building across to Maçka Topçu Okulu (Macka Artillery
School) which was destroyed by religious fundamentalists during the
March 31 Rebellion on April 12, 1909.
1911-1982 FROM RASATHANE-I AMIRE TO KANDILLI RASATHANESI:
After the 31 Mart incident, on 21 June 1910 Emrullah Efendi, the Minister
of Education in the new Ottoman government, appointed Fatin Hoca (Fatin
Gökmen) to reestablish the observatory. Fatin Gökmen chose the
Icadiye Hill, the president site, for the location of the observatory.
At the time there was nothing on Icadiye Hill except small buildings
housing the Artillery Division of the Bosphorus Command and a stone
tower used by fire watchmen. On September 4, 1910, the observatory was
temporarily housed in the buildings vacated by the Artillery Division.
Using the budget supplied by the Ministry of Education, the available
buildings were reorganized and the equipment necessary for a first
class Meteorology Station was ordered. Dating from July 1, 1911,
continuous and systematic meteorology parameters have been measured
and recorded. Daily weather forecast reports were prepared for
Istanbul and accurate time determination which were obtained from
sexant observations were transmitted to the State Postal (PTT) and
Railway (DDY) administrations.
In 1912 Umumi Havaiye Müfettişliği (General Meteorological
Inspectorate) was established for getting the meteorological
information that will assist the navigation of the military planes. As
the First World War ended the Ministry of Education changed its name
to Tetkikatı İklimiye Müfettişliği (Climatological
Investigations Inspectorate) and its objective to fulfill the civilian
needs, and annexed it to Rasathane-I Amire (State Observatory).
the years following the foundation of Republic of Turkey, the
name Rasathane-I Amire was officially used. After the Alphabet
Revolution the Observatory was renamed as Maarif Vekaleti Heyet
ve Fiziki Arzi Istanbul Rasathanesi. Kandilli Rasathanesi
(Kandilli Observatory) was officially fist used in 1939i as it can be
seen on the publications. The name Kandilli Observatory, Astronomy
and Geophysics came into use after 1940.