Constantinople photos: the original width of the Hippodrome, plus the column of Arcadius

A couple of items have appeared on twitter this morning that I am loathe to let go by.  The first is a splendid, end-on view of the Hippodrome in Istanbul.  Note the arches at the foot of it.  This end of the Hippodrome was supported by them; which means that we can see just how wide the structure originally was!

End-on view of Hippodrome, Istanbul, from the air
End-on view of Hippodrome, Istanbul, from the air

I learn from Ste. Trombetti that the column of Arcadius, the “columna historiata”, was demolished in 1715, but a drawing of it survives (this from BNF):

Column of Arcadius, Istanbul, in 17th c.
Column of Arcadius, Istanbul, pre-1715.

However the base of the column does still exist, deprived of its reliefs!

Column of Arcadius, Istanbul.
Column of Arcadius, Istanbul.

Marvellous!

UPDATE: Dr Trombetti also draws my attention to this stunning blog post on the column of Arcadius, complete with early maps showing it intact, early drawings of the column, its reliefs, sections, early photographs, and a google maps diagram indicating its location in the modern city.  The blog is in Turkish but if you view the page using the Chrome browser and let it translate automatically for you then you will get 95% of what the author says.

4 thoughts on “Constantinople photos: the original width of the Hippodrome, plus the column of Arcadius

  1. Wow, that is pretty amazing! And you can just barely see some of the laurel wreath on top, at the bottom of the column itself….

  2. I study Constantinople-Istanbul since 1970; but every time I see such astonishing ‘things’ I understand that I need another century or so in order to master the subject. The Hippodrome fhoto clears a lot of the Sphendoni topography. Thank you for the Arcadios connection. I am greatful.

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