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Constantine Column, Istanbul

3.6
#52 of 190 in Sightseeing in Istanbul
Monument Landmark
The Column of Constantine, also known as the Burnt Stone or the Burnt Pillar, is a Roman monumental column constructed on the orders of the Roman emperor Constantine the Great in 330 AD. It commemorates the declaration of Byzantium as the new capital city of the Roman Empire. The column is located on Yeniçeriler Caddesi in the eponymous neighborhood of Çemberlitaş, Fatih, central Istanbul, along the old Divan Yolu between the Hippodrome of Constantinople and the Forum of Theodosius .HistoryThe column was dedicated on May 11, 330 AD, with a mix of Christian and pagan ceremonies.In Constantine's day the column was at the center of the Forum of Constantine (today known as Çemberlitaş Square), an oval forum situated outside the city walls in the vicinity of what may have been the west gate of Antoninia. On its erection, the column was 50 meters tall, constructed of several cylindrical porphyry blocks. The exact number of porphyry blocks is disputed, but common figures range from seven, up to as many as eleven. These blocks were surmounted by a statue of Constantine in the figure of Apollo. The orb he carried was said to contain a fragment of the True Cross. At the foot of the column was a sanctuary which contained relics allegedly from the crosses of the two thieves who were crucified with Jesus Christ at Calvary, the baskets from the loaves and fishes miracle, an alabaster ointment jar belonging to Mary Magdalene and used by her for anointing the head and feet of Jesus, and the palladium of ancient Rome (a wooden statue of Pallas Athena from Troy).
A visit to Constantine Column represents just the start of the adventure when you use our Istanbul trip generator to plot your vacation.
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168 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • The cross was believed to save constantinople from all evil like earthquakes, invasion attacks, etc. Underneth the column there were rumors that the sacred cup, and dress of jesus christ was buried. P...  more »
  • Ancient Istanbul has many wonderful treasures and this is one of them. However, you can't read up on it at the site - well I could not find anything like the three language signs that are all over old...  more »
  • Its in old Town, was walking and it caught my eye. That's when I figured out what is wall. The photos are correct, birds hanging off of it everywhere. A great picture shot been around since almost 330...  more »
Google
  • Great landmark and meeting point. Spectacular pigeon display and good views of nearby feature. Worth a visit.
  • It's a beautiful place to take pictures in your way to or from the Grand Bazaar. If you're in the area don't miss a chance.
  • It will find you if your walking old town. It's a great place for photos and is very old. I was not looking for it and it took some time to figure out what it was. Enjoy.
  • Cool authentic column from antiquity surrounded by Ottoman gems.
  • The Constantine column is built of stones. Originally all the surfaces of the column were covered with bronze relief pieces.

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Where to stay in Istanbul

The bustling downtown core of old Istanbul is the popular choice among tourists wanting a short walking distance to the city's biggest attractions. Here you'll find hostel-style accommodations and reasonably priced and traditionally decorated hotels, as well as bed and breakfasts and inns with views overlooking the sea. Though often the most affordable, accommodations in the old city can be very overrun with tourists and street solicitors. If you seek a more relaxed stay, consider lodging near Taksim Square. This new, trendy neighborhood is a short 15-20 minute ride from the old city, but puts you closer to restaurants, shopping, and nightlife. Though the newer area of the city is a bit more upscale, you'll also find moderately priced hotels and some hostels. Look for luxury hotels in the western suburbs close to the airport, overlooking the banks of Bosphorus.
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