Palace of the Porphyrogenitus

The Palace of the Porphyrogenitus, also known as the "Palace of Constantine Porphyrogenitus" ( _tr. " Tekfur Sarayı") which means "Palace of the Emperor") is the ruins of a 13th century Byzantine palace in the north-western part of the old city of Constantinople (present-day Istanbul, Turkey).

History

The Palace was constructed during the late 12th or early 13th centuries as part of the palace complex of Blachernae, where the Theodosian Walls join with the later walls of the suburb of Blachernae Although the palace appears at first glance to be named after Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus, the 10th Century emperor, it was built long after his time. It is in fact named after Constantine Palaiologos, a son of the Emperor Michael VIII Palaiologos. [Treadgold, A History of the Byzantine State and Society. Pp.746 ] 'Porphyrogenitus', meaning literally 'born to the purple', in this context indicates a child who is heir to the Byzantine throne. The palace served as imperial residence during the final years of the Byzantine Empire.

The palace suffered extensive damage due to its proximity to the outer walls during the Ottoman conquest of Constantinople in 1453. Afterwards, it was used for a wide variety of purposes. During the 16th and 17th century, it housed part of the Sultan's menagerie. The animals were moved elsewhere by the end of the 17th century, and the building was used as a brothel. From 1719, the Tekfur Saray pottery workshop was constructed, and began to produce ceramic tiles in a style similar to that of İznik tiles, but influenced by European designs and colors. The studio had five kilns and also produced vessels and dishes. [Blair. The Art and Architecture of Islam, 1250-1800. Pp.237 ] The project lasted for around a century before going out of business, and by the first half of the 19th century, the building became a poorhouse for Istanbul Jews. In the early 20th century, it was briefly used as a bottle factory, before being abandoned. [Freely. Blue Guide Istanbul. Pp.270] As a result, only the elaborate brick and stone outer façade survives today, but it is the only major surviving example of secular Byzantine architecture. As of 2006, the palace was undergoing extensive restoration.

Architecture

The Palace was a large three-story building located between the inner and outer fortifications of the northern corner of the Theodosian Walls. The ground floor is an arcade with four arches, which opens into a courtyard overlooked by five large windows on the first floor. The top floor of the structure project above the walls, and has windows on all four sides. On the east is the remnant of a balcony. The roof and all of the floors of the structure have disappeared. The remaining walls are elaborately decorated in geometric designs using red brick and white marble typical of the late Byzantine period.

Gallery

References

*cite book
last = Freely
first = John
year = 2000
title = Blue Guide Istanbul
publisher = W. W. Norton & Company
location =
id = ISBN 0393320146

*cite book
last = Cruikshank
first = Dan
year = 1996
title = Sir Banister Fletcher's A History of Architecture.
publisher = Architectural Press
location =
id = ISBN 0750622679

*cite book
last = Blair
first = Shelia
year = 1996
title = The Art and Architecture of Islam, 1250-1800
publisher = Yale University Press
location =
id = ISBN 0300064659

*cite book
last = Treadgold
first = Warren
year = 1997
title = A History of the Byzantine State and Society
publisher = Stanford University Press
location =
id = ISBN 0804726302

External links

* [http://www.byzantium1200.com/tekfur.html 3D reconstruction of the palace from the "Byzantium 1200" website]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • The Byzantine Empire —     The Byzantine Empire     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Byzantine Empire     The ancient Roman Empire having been divided into two parts, an Eastern and a Western, the Eastern remained subject to successors of Constantine, whose capital was at …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus — born Sept. 905, Constantinople died Nov. 9, 959 Byzantine emperor (913–59). Coemperor with his father, Leo VI, from 911, he became sole ruler in 913. His father in law, Romanus I Lecapenus, was crowned coemperor with him in 920 and soon became… …   Universalium

  • Baldwin II Porphyrogenitus — born 1217, Constantinople died Oct. 1273, Foggia, Kingdom of Sicily Fifth and last Latin emperor of Constantinople (1228–61). The son of the third Latin emperor (Porphyrogenitus means born to the purple, thus of royal birth ), Baldwin inherited… …   Universalium

  • Walls of Constantinople — Istanbul, Turkey Map showing Constantinople and its walls du …   Wikipedia

  • Constantinople — This article is about the city before the Fall of Constantinople (1453). For a more detailed approach after 1453, see History of Istanbul. For other uses, see Constantinople (disambiguation). Map of Byzantine Constantinople …   Wikipedia

  • Constantinople — • Capital, formerly of the Byzantine, now of the Ottoman, Empire (As of 1908, when the article was written.) Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Constantinople     Constantinople …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Blachernes — Palais des Blachernes Palais du Porphyrogénète Les Blachernes désignent un quartier au nord de Constantinople, situé entre le monastère de Chora, la porte d’Andrinople et la Corne d Or et abritant, outre un palais, l une des 24 portes de la… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Palais des Blachernes — Palais du Porphyrogénète Les Blachernes désignent un quartier au nord de Constantinople, situé entre le monastère de Chora, la porte d’Andrinople et la Corne d Or et abritant, outre un palais, l une des 24 portes de la muraille de Théodose II,… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Quartier des Blachernes — Palais du Porphyrogénète Les Blachernes désignent un quartier au nord de Constantinople, situé entre le monastère de Chora, la porte d’Andrinople et la Corne d Or et abritant, outre un palais, l une des 24 portes de la muraille de Théodose II,… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Medieval household — John, Duke of Berry enjoying a grand meal. The Duke is seen sitting at the high table surrounded by numerous servants, guests and dependents. Illustration from Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, ca 1410. The medieval household was, like… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.