Wednesday, March 13, 2013

ISTANBUL DAY 3 - BASILICA CISTERN

Basilica Cistern is another historic site that attracts tourists from all over the world. In English, Basilica Cistern could be translated as the sunken palace, although it did not look like a palace to me. It was more like a basement of a palace which was gloomy, dark and spooky too. We were basically underneath the city of Istanbul and this was definitely another wonder of ancient architecture and technology.


The original usage of this Cistern was to store and supply water to the palace and other buildings in Istanbul many centuries ago. Click HERE and HERE to read more about Basilica Cistern.
 



I have snapped pictures of the information related to the Cistern for you. I should do this more often so I don't have to write a long entry every time I update my blog.









This is the pillar where people could see the carving which resembles the humans' eyes. It is said this pillar symbolizes the death of thousands of slaves who were involved in building this place, hence the teary eyes. And this symbol can be found in some of the souvenirs that people buy in Istanbul - on key chains, for example.



Another spots that attracted people was the pillars with two heads of Medusa used as the base. There could be some interesting myth that could relate to this extraordinary structure.




It is not used as a reservoir anymore today. Some people have already turned the Cistern into some sort of a wishing well, by looking at the coins that could be seen in the pool.