Gül Baba – in Hungarian, Rose Father – was a bektashi dervish who, starting with the reign of II. Mehmed accompanied the Ottoman army during their European military campaigns. The title “rose” in his name expresses a spiritual rank, which reflects a deep transcendental knowledge of God.
Gül Baba arrived in Buda in 1541 with I. Suleiman the Magnificent. According to legend, he died on the day of the thanksgiving ceremonies for the occupation of the city, on 2 September 1541. Sultan I. Suleiman also took part in his funeral and declared Gül Baba as the patron saint of Buda. The monument on the tomb of Gül Baba was built between 1543 and 1548 by the 3. Pasha of Buda.
In 1686 during the second siege of Buda the Habsburg army did not harm the tomb and later the Jesuit priests converted the monument into a catholic chapel. In 1885 the Ottoman government commissioned the Hungarian architect Janos Wagner for restoration of the tomb and the surrounding monument. Janos Wagner built support walls around the building complex which also incorporated his living. Upon closing of the restorations, the monument was declared a Hungarian National Memorial Site in 1914.
During the 20. Century several renovations and reconstruction activities were performed on the tomb and the surrounding buildings. By the beginning of the new millennium (2000) the building complex necessitated fundamental restorations due to negligence in the preceding decades, thus the location was closed to visitors for several years.
The Ottoman era is longer period where the history of the two cultures cross each other. This period is longer than widely known by the public, spanning to 400 years of neighborhood. To the common era of neighborhood encompassing historical, linguistic and archeological traditions the world of scents and flavors must be added. The cuisine of the two peoples with the traditional (folk) costumes and folk music reflect similarities which extend to a more distant past than the Ottoman era.
During his travels in Anatolia, Béla Bartók, the Hungarian composer proves in a long study that the two peoples have common roots from Asia according to his analysis of the folk songs he collected. The spiritual heritage of Gül Baba and the versatility of the cultures today, live through the technological advancements of media and communication in harmony with the heritage from old times long past.