Eshab-ı Kehf Cave

By the Editors of the Madain Project

  • This article is a stub as it does not provide effective content depth for the core subject discussed herein. We're still working to expand it, if you'd like to help with it you can request expansion. This tag should be removed, once the article satisfies the content depth criteria.
    What is this?

  • This article does not include/cite any credible references, it should be rewritten to rectify this issue. Once done this tage should be removed.

The Eshab-ı Kehf Cave (Eshab-ı Kehf Mağarası or Ashab-ı Kehf Mağarası), also known as the Seven Sleepers, is a tourist cave situated to the north of Tarsus, an ilçe (district) in the Mersin Province or modern day Turkey. The cave, situated approximately 14 kilometers from Tarsus and 40 kilometers from Mersin, rests at the base of a modest hill.

See Subject Home > Turkey / Anatolia > Tarsus > Eshab-ı Kehf Cave


The tradition of the "Companions of the Cave" is narrated in the Surah al-Kahf, eighteenth chapter, of Quran. The verses from 9 to 26 of the chapter recall the extra-biblical Christian tradition of the "companions of the cave". A few young believers who lived in a time when they were persecuted for their beliefs. Upon the guidance of God, they fled the city where believers were persecuted, together with their dog, and took refuge in a cave where they fell asleep for a number of years. When they awoke they found that the people of the city had become believers.

Notable Structures


The Cave
It is a relatively smaller cave as compared to the other caves in the vicinity.

circa 1872 CE

The small square mosque was built by the mufti of the city, Ahmet Efendi, in the name of Sultan Abdulaziz's mother in 1872 CE (1289 Hijri). The architect of the mosque is not unknown.

The square planned mosque is covered with a dome, placed on an octagonal frame. There are two windows on each facade. There are four columns and three domed narthexes on the narth and a small minaret with a single balcony on the south-west corner. A second, taller, minaret was built at the eastern side of the msoque which was externded with additions at the south. The mosque minaret has three balconies (şerefes) and the access is provided by a number of ladders to each balcony of the minaret. The mosque was heavily restoer by Vakifiar Genel Mudurlugu (Directorate of Waqfs) in 2006 CE.

See Also

Let's bring some history to your inbox

Signup for our monthly newsletter / online magazine.
No spam, we promise.

Privacy Policy