Walking through history line of Byzantine in Sultanahmet – Nükte Şahin

In our fieldtrip on Saturday, we had the chance to explore the hidden part of the Constaninople and the opportunity of observing how the past treated to present.

We began with the Lausos Palais which constructed by Lausos but destroyed in a fire in 475 A.D. Lausos was a man who has liked to preserve art that he collected the most beautiful statues like Zeus- the head of Gods- surrounded by goddesses. However, counting on the fact that Lausos was a son of a hotdog maker he was kind of initiated the beginning of social life in terms of marking shared past by placing the statues in the palace as a visual reminder.Unfortunately, today there is no sign in the park where remaining of the palace walls-hidden behind of public chairs-indicating that it was Lausos Palais in sometime of the history. After we saw the remainig archeological evidence from Antiochos Palais which has been destroyed by the time the palace of justice was constructed in the area. (more…)


Residential Complexes around the Hippodrome by Flannery Donley

Residential complexes around the Hippodrome: the palace of Antiochos and its transformation into the church of St. Euphemia

The Palace of Antiochos was built northwest of the Hippodrome and was for and named after a Persian eunuch who worked in the Great Palace under Theodosius II. Antiochos worked in the Palace from 402-439 and so it is believed that this palace was erected sometime during his service and more specifically, there is archeological evidence as well as literary sources which suggest that the palace was built after 429. In the 6th century the palace was converted into a church and named after St. Euphemia because her bones were brought to this site as holy relics. Euphemia was a Christian martyr whom was persecuted and died for her faith in Chalcedon which is on the opposite side of Constantinople on the Bosphorus. (more…)

doğa ortaköylü

In the fieldtrip on Saturday we learned that we walked through some places in Sultanahmet without knowing that there were important places in the Byzantium time. First of all, I remember the place that we stood which was Lausos palace in 5th century. It is located in a park west of the Hippodrome, the ruins of the hall of the Palace of Antiochus and limestone blocks are still can be seen. Lausos had been collected beautiful statutes for there, he put statue of Zeus and goddesses. Later on fire destroyed the palace. There are walls remained from those times, which are burned. Many people see those walls but they don’t noticed because there is no information about that place. (more…)

Hippodrome and Obelisk of Theodosius, Polat Utku Kayrak

This first field trip was a great experience for me although I am a Turkish citizen and used to go those areas when I was younger. Our field trip started just at the outside of Hagia Sophia and continued with an area near an open-air theatre that few people know about the importance of that particular area. After that, we also visited a place just behind the Palace of Justice and Mosaic Museum. Also when I’ve found myself in an underground tunnel with no light and proper reconstruction, I hardly believed myself that the city I live in has that kind of ancient, complicated and mystical structures. (more…)

The Hidden History of Istanbul – Andrea Hague

Our Late Antique & Byzantine art history class traveled to Sultanahmet two Saturdays ago to see for ourselves what remained of what we have read about and discussed in class. As we waited in front of the Hagia Sophia for everyone to arrive, Dr. Ricci repeated what we had learned in class, that we were standing had been the Augusteon, the forum where Justinian had placed his great equestrian statue. And yet, even as we were standing there staring up at the church that he had built, I did not feel that much more connected to that time period than when I had studied the diagrams in class. In place of the Augusteon there is still a plaza of sorts, but nothing remains of its Byzantine past. This disconnect that I experienced as I stood in what I knew had once been the Augusteon continued throughout the day. Even in the places where we were still able to see remnants of the city’s early history, it was difficult to put them into context. (more…)

Blog Post on the Hippodrome, David Bergstein

Our field trip began at the Augustaion Square, directly outside the Hagia Sophia. In Byzantium the Augusteon served a similar function as it does today: a public forum, a meeting space and a center of commercial activity. After the Nika Riot the square was re-built by Justinian (along with the Hagia Sophia), and until the iconoclast period it was full of statues. During the Byzantine era the Augustaion square was surrounded by the Palace of the Patriarchate, the main Gate of the Great Palace, the Senate, Palace of Magnaura (the diplomatic palace), the bath of Zeuxipphos, the Hippodrome and the Basilica Cistern. The centrality of the square makes it easy to imagine that the Augustaion must have been full of activity. (more…)

Arha 318 BlogPost – Ayşe Melis Yılmaz

The trip we made was really exciting for me because I had not even thought once about the monuments that we visit while I was driving every single morning to Sultanahmet for my sister’s school last year. I wanted to write about more on The Palace of Lausus because It was surprising for me to learn about the Lausus’s palace which is in Adliye Sarayı’s back of garden. It also felt different to learn students did the cleaning that abandoned structure. That’s why I wanted to write about that archeological heritage which I guess none of us knew before this trip as a citizen of Istanbul. (more…)

Published in: on November 6, 2009 at 19:31  Leave a Comment  
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Nilay Ozdemir’s fieldtrip post

In this fieldtrip I have exprienced that there is strong connection linking the past all together.The places we visited are the once that it is understood .They are the most visited sections of istanbul, on the other hand we have discovered the once we could not by ourselves. I personally think that regeneration is strongly needed as soon as possible and moreover the hidden places should be taken into consideration by our government. (more…)

A Saturday in Sultanahmet: Reflection (Harrison King)

Although it has largely disappeared today, the Hippodrome of Constantinople was once a vibrant urban center where chariot races and political gatherings took place. The massive elliptical structure, measuring 115 x 425 meters with a holding capacity of 60-100,000 people, first emerged under the reign of Emperor Septimus Severus and was completed by Emperor Constantine I (“the Great”) in 330, the year Constantinople was established. Built adjacent to the Great Palace of Constantinople on the city’s historic peninsula, now known as Sultanahmet, the hippodrome’s southern curvilinear end (sphendones) approached the Sea of Marmara while the opposite end had a less pronounced curve and featured a quadriga (four horse statues), brought from Rome, which was placed on top. An exciting element of the chariot races was the sight of the emperor, who sat in the kathisma (imperial viewing box), tangent to the Great Palace on the last stretch of the racetrack, from where he crowned the victor with a laurel wreath. (more…)