27 Apr

Basilica Cistern (Yerebatan Sarnici)

One of several hundred ancient cisterns beneath the city of Istanbul, the Basilica Cistern is the largest, built by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I in 532. It was designed to supply the city with water in case of siege, and its name derives from a large public square beneath which it was originally constructed, Stoa Basilica. Today a wooden walkway winds between the ancient pillars and two impressive Medusa heads can be seen at the base of columns in the northwest corner.

 

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