Bathing History

Turkish The Turkish ‘hammam’ (bath) tradition incarnates respect of water and rites, which harness the elements for the cleansing and purification of the body. A hammam was intimately bound to everyday’s life, and frequently visited from men and woman at separate hours, for people of every rank and class, rich and poor, young and old. There had been over 300 public hammams in Istanbul in the 16th century. Like its Roman predecessor a typical hammam consists of three basic, interconnected rooms: the sıcaklık (or hararet -caldarium), which is the hot room; the warm room (tepidarium), which is the intermediate room; and the soğukluk, which is the cool room (frigidarium). The finest example of the Turkish hammam culture was the monumental Çemberlitaş Hamami, built 1584 in Instanbul.