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People who visited Istanbul’s Istiklal Caddesi (İstiklal Caddesi) in the new millennium will tell you that it’s a busy but pleasant pedestrian street in the Beyoğlu district, housing a huge variety of shops, galleries, restaurants, bars and cinemas. And that is exact what Istiklal Caddesi today is. However, most people don’t know that it was […]


Atatürk Had it not been for Mustafa Kemal, there might not be Turkey today. Most Turks rejected the terms of the peace agreement and rallied behind him in a war of independence from 1912 to 1922, banishing the Greeks and deposing the sultan. Mustafa Kemal founded the Turkish Republic on 29 October 1923 and took […]


Ottomans at the Gate The Seljuks had become a force to be reckoned with, growing from a small principality in Anatolia to a powerful army, known as the Ottomans. They ruled over the Balkans, the area all around Constantinople and much of the remainder of the Byzantine Empire. The fall of Constantinople can be attributed […]


In 334 AD, the city was invaded by Roman Emperor Constantine the Great, an act that was to shape the city’s destiny for the next 1000 years. Constantine crossed the Bosphorus to Chyrsopolis, now Üsküdar. He gained control of the city and declared it Nova Roma, or New Rome, the second capital of the Roman […]


The foundation of Istanbul is usually dated in 667 BC, when the Megarian King Byzas arrived at the mouth of the Bosphorus. The legend goes that Byzas had consulted the oracle at Delphi, Greece, as to where he should found a city and been given the cryptic reply ‘Opposite the blind’. The king spotted a […]


Istanbul was founded in the 7th century BC on a natural spot, from which trade over the Bosphorus could be controlled. For over 16 centuries it has been a large capital, first of the Byzantine Empire and afterwards of the Ottoman sultans. If the Earth was a single state, Istanbul would be its capital. Napoleon […]


For those among you who don’t have a lot of time or have very little interest in what happened in the past, here is Istanbul at a glance. Thorough as I am, of course I also provided an in-depth view on Istanbul’s fascinating history for you.