27 November 2022 The Future is the Product of the Past

The Basilica cistern, which is said to have the sarcophagus of Medusa or the Mysterious Snake Woman, was restored

The Basilica Cistern, one of the magnificent ancient structures of Istanbul, was restored. Besides being the greatest work of the Roman period, the cistern is the focus of interesting narrations.

The two Medusa heads, used as supports under the two columns at the northwest end of the cistern, are considered the reason why the cistern is mentioned in strange rumors, except that it is a great work of the Roman period.

The Basilica Cistern is located southwest of Hagia Sophia. This large subterranean water reservoir was built for Justinianus I, the Byzantium Emperor (527-565), and is known as the “Yerebatan Cistern” among the public due to the buried marble columns. It is also known as Basilica Cistern since there used to be a basilica at the location of the cistern.

In 2017, Istanbul Municipality started restoration work on the Basilica Cistern. Istanbul Municipality President Ekrem İmamoğlu announced on his Twitter account that the restoration work, which lasted for 4 years, has ended and the visits to the Basilica Cistern will begin at the weekend.

The entrance and exit sections of the Basilica Cistern, which have not undergone extensive restoration work for 1,500 years, were arranged.

Due to the large number of people who wanted to visit the cistern and the narrowness of the entrance area, the visitors were forming long queues at the gate. The restoration covered the entrance area with glass eaves and a waiting area was made. Necessary plan changes were made in the exit section of the cistern, and a suitable and useful area was created for the building.

The Basilica Cistern is located in a rectangular area 140 meters long and 70 meters wide. The building, which has a water storage capacity of approximately 100,000 tons in an area of 9,800 m2, is accessible by a 52-step stone staircase.

There are 336 columns, each 9 meters high, inside the cistern. The columns are 4.80 meters long, forming 12 rows of 28 columns each.

  Majority of the columns, most of which is understood to have been compiled from the ancient structures and sculpted of various kinds of marbles, is composed of a single part and one of it is composed of two parts. The head of these columns bear different features in parts. 98 of them reflect the Corinthian style and part of them reflect the Dorian style.

The restoration work of the Basilica Cistern took 4 years.

The two Medusa heads, used as supports under the two columns at the northwest end of the cistern, are considered the reason why the cistern is mentioned in strange rumors, except that it is a great work of the Roman period.

The fact that the structure from which the Medusa heads were taken is not known is a very remarkable detail.

The researchers often consider that it has been brought for being used as supports to the column at the time of construction of the cistern.  However, this has not prevented myths for the heads of Medusa.

During the research on the Medusa heads in the Basilica cistern, some documents mentioned in Kara Kaplı, a diary kept by Sultan Abdülhamit II, were found. These documents in Kara Kaplı have carried the Medusa narrative to a very different dimension.

In 1456, a delegation of Italian origin income from Venice to meet with Fatih Sultan Mehmet. They demand to meet with the Sultan, but the Sultan assigns the grand vizier to meet with the delegation. The delegation tells the vizier about the treasure in the Basilica Cistern, but they say that they can only tell the Sultan the location of the treasure.

Medusa heads, Basilica Cistern

The subject attracts Sultan’s attention and he agrees to meet with a member of the delegation. The chosen representative tells the Sultan that the treasure in the Basilica Cistern is not a material thing, but a corpse. The committee, which offered a lot in return for this corpse and the sarcophagus (coffin) in which it was found, could not get what it wanted. According to what is mentioned in Kara Kaplı, this delegation is a member of a paganist sect.

After Fatih Sultan Mehmet, Abdulhamit Han took a close interest in the Medusa sarcophagus. When a delegation was sent to Abdülhamit Han to discuss this issue several times, the Sultan’s interest in Medusa increased and he asked for research on this subject. Abdülhamit Han, who decided to take out the sarcophagus in line with the information learned from the research and the delegations, and the people he assigned in this regard, find the sarcophagus in one of the corridors of the Basilica Cistern.

Inside the sarcophagus is the deteriorated mummy of a terrifying creature. The head of this creature resembles a human head, but with its entire body curves, it resembles a giant snake. This sarcophagus is taken under protection by the order of the Sultan. It is decided that the sarcophagus, which is wanted to be hidden from the public first, will be brought to light later on the condition that its cover is not removed.

The news of the sarcophagus of Medusa published in Resimli Gazeta.

One day, a child entered one of the corridors and saw the corpse inside and said to the people of Istanbul, “I saw Şahmeran!” event is heard. This sarcophagus weighing tons is brought to light with great difficulty and taken to the courtyard of Fatih Mosque and shown to the public for a short time.

By order of Abdülhamit Han, the photograph of the corpse was taken and published in the newspapers of that period. Today, there is no trace of the newspapers in which the photographs of this sarcophagus were published.

Although it is known that many foreigners are after the Medusa sarcophagus, it is also said that the delegations that came to the Sultan held rituals around this sarcophagus for years. It is a matter of curiosity whether these delegations have anything to do with the confiscation of the newspapers and the cover-up of the event.

The news is titled “Our Sultan has found Medusa”.

The legend of Şahmeran: The legend tells about the great love of Şahmeran, a half-snake half-human woman, with Tahmasp. He mentions that Şahmeran is hidden in a cave, that he knows the secret of the world and that the one who eats his flesh will be healed. Those who seek Şahmeran for the health of the sick sultan find him thanks to Tahmasp and at the end of the legend, the vizier kills Şahmeran. Although it is not known what happened to Şahmeran’s body after he died, Tahmasp may have hidden Şahmeran’s body in a sarcophagus.

Perhaps we will never find out if Şahmeran and Medusa are the same woman. However, these legends, which have been going on for centuries, will continue to circulate centuries later.

Banner
Related Post

350,000-Year-Old Human Settlement have been Discovered on the Arabian Peninsula

17 May 2021

17 May 2021

One of the world’s oldest Acheulean sites was found in the northern region of Hail in Saudi Arabia. Al Nasim...

In Lviv, Ukraine, a secret room where Jews were hiding in city sewers during the Nazi Holocaust has been unearthed

7 November 2021

7 November 2021

In the western Ukrainian city of Lviv, diggers have uncovered new hiding spots in underground sewers where some Jews managed...

İnteresting Relief on the Roman Millstone

20 February 2021

20 February 2021

During the Cambridgeshire A14 road improvement work, workers found an interesting millstone. A large penis was engraved in the Roman-era...

4000-year-old boat salvaged near the ancient city of Uruk one of the most important cities in ancient Mesopotamia

6 April 2022

6 April 2022

A team of archaeologists from the Iraqi German Mission of the State Board of Antiquities and the Orient Department of...

3D virtual reconstruction of the Celtic city gate

2 May 2022

2 May 2022

A new 3D virtual reconstruction of the Celtic gate has been made in Staffelberg, in the German state of Bavaria....

Archaeologists Find the Missing Link of the Alphabet

15 April 2021

15 April 2021

Researchers believe that Tel Lachish pottery is the oldest of its kind found in the region, and could explain how...

The Oldest Known Map of Europe, “Saint-Bélec Slab”

6 April 2021

6 April 2021

An ornate Bronze Age stone slab (Saint-Bélec slab) that was excavated in France in 1900 and forgotten about for over...

7,800-year-old female figurine discovered in Ulucak Höyük in western Turkey

8 August 2022

8 August 2022

A 7,800-year-old female figurine was found in the Ulucak Höyük (Ulucak Mound) in the Kemalpaşa district of Izmir. It was...

800-year-old Jin dynasty palace complex found in Beijing Olympic Village

9 February 2022

9 February 2022

While building the athletes’ Olympic Village for this year’s Winter Games in Beijing, China found the remains of an ancient...

Getting to Know Matar Kubilea

8 February 2021

8 February 2021

Hittite state’s, With its collapse in 1200-1190 BC, Anatolia entered a period of drift from holistic to dispersal. (The Hittite...

The ruins of a thousand-year-old Buddhist Temple will be opened to the public in Kyrgyzstan

13 September 2022

13 September 2022

The unearthed remains of an ancient Buddhist temple in Kyrgyzstan will open to the public in mid-September as part of...

The Rock Tombs Found by Chance in the Al-Hamidiyah Necropolis

12 May 2021

12 May 2021

A series of rock tombs carved into the slope of a mountain have been discovered in the Al-Hamidiyah necropolis on...

Paleonursery offers a detailed glimpse at life 518 million years ago

6 July 2021

6 July 2021

Fossilized specimens of thousands of undersea animals buried under a sedimentary avalanche 518 million years ago have been found near...

Iraq’s historic Arch of Ctesiphon undergoes restoration work

28 November 2021

28 November 2021

Iraq’s Arch of Ctesiphon, the world’s largest brick-built arch, is having restoration work to return it to its former splendour,...

1500-year-old Amulet Made to Ward off the Evil Eye in Galilee

26 May 2021

26 May 2021

Discovered about 40 years ago in the Galilee village of Arbel, the necklace sheds light on life 1500 years ago....

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *