Cistern of Philoxenos

Interior of the cistern

The Cistern of Philoxenos (Greek: Κινστέρνα Φιλοξένου), or Binbirdirek Cistern, is a man-made subterranean reservoir in Istanbul, situated between the Forum of Constantine and the Hippodrome of Constantinople in the Sultanahmet district. It has been restored and is now visited as a tourist attraction.

Contents

Construction

The cistern was constructed under a palace, often identified as the Palace of Antiochos in the 5th century. The reservoir has a surface area of 3640 m2, storing 40,000 m3 of water. The cistern is composed of a large hypostyle chamber supported by vaults. The 224 columns, each 14 to 15 meters tall, are made of marble from nearby Marmara Island. Each column is a superposition of two columns, joined by a marble ring. The floor of the cistern was later reinforced, so that only the upper column and a short sleeve of the lower column are thus visible. A part of the original exterior is now preserved on display near the entrance. Most of the columns, and also the caps, are engraved with a Greek mason's mark.

Restoration

The cistern was restored by Justinian I in the 6th century, after the palace was completely destroyed in a fire in 475. After the conquest of the city by the Ottomans in 1453, the cistern fell into disuse, and was forgotten until rediscovered during the construction of Fazli Pasha's palace on the same site in the 17th century.

1001 columns

The name Binbirdirek translates from Turkish as "1001 Columns" although the true number is only 224.

Sources

  • Alexander Kazhdan (éd.), The Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium, 3 vols., Oxford University Press, 1991 (ISBN 0195046528), s. v. Constantinople, Monuments of : Cisterns, vol. 1, 518-519 ;
  • (German) Wolfgang Müller-Wiener, Bildlexikon Zur Topographie Istanbuls: Byzantion, Konstantinupolis, Istanbul Bis Zum Beginn D. 17 Jh, Wasmuth, Tübingen, 1977 (ISBN 3-8030-1022-5), 280-281.

See also

Coordinates: 41°0′27″N 28°58′28″E / 41.0075°N 28.97444°E / 41.0075; 28.97444


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Liste römischer Zisternen — Die Cisterna Basilica in Konstantinopel Die Liste römischer Zisternen bietet einen Überblick über Wasserspeicher des Römischen Reiches in der Antike. Die Süßwasserreservoirs befanden sich überwiegend an den Endpunkten von Aquädukten, wo sie zur… …   Deutsch 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

  • Palace of Lausus — The Palace of Lausus or Lausos, also known as the Lauseion ( el. Λαυσείον) was a 5th century building located in Constantinople that was acquired and owned by the eunuch Lausus.Lausus, who had formerly served as a eunuch in the court of… …   Wikipedia

  • Istanbul —   City   Top: Topkapı Palace – Hagia Sophia – Blue Mosque Center: Beyoğlu; …   Wikipedia

  • Utilities in Istanbul — covers the topic of public utility services in the city of Istanbul, Turkey.Water supplyThe first water supply systems which were built in Istanbul date back to the foundation of the city. Two of the greatest aqueducts built in the Roman period… …   Wikipedia

  • Citerne Basilique (Yerebatan Sarayı) — La Citerne Basilique (en grec Βασιλικὴ κινστέρνη / Basilikè kinstérnè), aussi connue sous le nom turc Yerebatan Sarnici ( la citerne enfouie sous terre ), est une gigantesque citerne souterraine de Constantinople, la capitale de l Empire byzantin …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Citernes De Constantinople — Citerne basilique (Yerebatan Sarayi) Les citernes de Constantinople (en grec κινστέρναι / kinstérnai) étaient l un des types de monument les plus répandus dans la capitale de l Empire byzantin, en raison de l absence de rivière et du petit nombre …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Citernes de Constantinople — Citerne basilique (Yerebatan Sarayi) Les citernes de Constantinople (en grec κινστέρναι / kinstérnai) étaient l un des types de monument les plus répandus dans la capitale de l Empire byzantin, en raison de l absence de rivière et du petit nombre …   Wikipédia en Français

  • biblical literature — Introduction       four bodies of written works: the Old Testament writings according to the Hebrew canon; intertestamental works, including the Old Testament Apocrypha; the New Testament writings; and the New Testament Apocrypha.       The Old… …   Universalium

  • Citerne Basilique (Yerebatan Sarnıcı) — 41°0′29″N 28°58′40″E / 41.00806, 28.97778 La Citerne Basilique (en grec Βασιλικὴ κι …   Wikipédia en Français


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.