Basilica Cistern - Yerebatan Saray, Istanbul

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  • mardaska's Profile Photo

    Yerebatan Saray

    by mardaska Written Aug 23, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Yerebatan Saray

    This byzantine cistern was the main source of water for Istanbul. It is well restored, about 140m long and 70 wide with decorated columns that support the arched roof. At the end of the walkway you can see two Medusa heads used as column bases.

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    • Historical Travel
    • Archeology

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  • elcolibri's Profile Photo

    Yerebatan Saray (Basilica Cistern)

    by elcolibri Written Aug 1, 2003

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    Yerebatan Saray , the Basilica Cistern, built by the Emperor Justinian is one of the most important still surviving cistern in Istanbul. This cistern covers an area of approximately ten thousand square meters. It has 336 marble columns inside. Dont forget watch each one, all are different.

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  • 80-bettyboo's Profile Photo

    Underground Cistern

    by 80-bettyboo Written Feb 2, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The cistern was built by Justinian in the 6th century with the capacity of 80,000 cu.m. of water.we call it Yerebatan Sarrayý..
    It is 140 meters long, 70 meters wide and has got 336 beautiful beautiful columns .
    while u are walking around, u can enjoy the classical music background.
    Open everyday except Mondays..
    Ent Fee : 2$

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  • beatle74's Profile Photo

    My favourite place - Yerebatan Cistern

    by beatle74 Written Jan 20, 2003

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    Near Hagia Sophia is the sixth-century Byzantine cistern known as the Yerebatan Sarnici. Three hundred and thirty-six massive Corinthian columns support the immense chamber's fine brick vaulting.

    Medusa as an Archetype

    Medusa has historically been seen as the archetype of the nasty mother, however she is far more complex. She symbolizes the following:

    Sovereign female wisdom. The female mysteries. All the forces of the primordial Great Goddess: The Cycles of Time as past, present and future. The Cycles of Nature as life, death and rebirth. She is universal Creativity and Destruction in eternal Transformation. She is the Guardian of the Thresholds and the Mediatrix between the Realms of heaven, earth and the underworld. She is Mistress of the Beasts. Latent and Active energy.

    Connection to the earth. The union of heaven and earth. She destroys in order to recreate balance. She purifies.

    She is the ultimate truth of reality, the wholeness beyond duality. She rips away our mortal illusions. Forbidden yet liberating wisdom. The untamable forces of nature. As a young and beautiful woman she is fertility and life. As crone she consumes by devouring all on the earth plane. Through death we must return to the source, the abyss of transformation, the timeless realm. We must yield to her and her terms of mortality. She reflects a culture in harmony with nature.

    And.....You'll find out that Medusa is in there!!! But before that, please
    watch out the stairs, sometimes they can be really slippery.

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  • Svillegas's Profile Photo

    Basilica Cistern

    by Svillegas Written Sep 26, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    If you go there in summer enjoy this visit, this is a very intesting place and the temperature is considerably lower than outdoors (believe me, you will thank that).
    Take attention to the music that you could listen here, it's like a divine gift.

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  • kunduz's Profile Photo

    Yerebatan Cistern

    by kunduz Updated Sep 16, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One of the major problems in ancient cities was how to ensure a water supply during seige. Istanbul possessed a series of large cisterns which were constructed with this in mind. Some were open and others were covered in. The latter were either square or rectangular in plan, and were roofed over with brick arches and vaults, supported on stone piers. The Yerebatan Sarnici is one of the largest covered cisterns of the era in Istanbul. It is situated not far from the court of Hagia Sophia. The district is named after it. In the Byzantine era, it was known as the `Basilica Cistern.` First constructed during the reign of Constantine I (306-337 AD), this underground cistern was restored and extended by Justinian (527-565 AD). It is 141 meters in length and 73 meters wide. There are twelve rows of columns supporting the superstructure, each with 28 columns, for a total of 336 in all. The columns are eight meters in height and are surmounted by composite capitals. The cistern was renowned for the coldness of the water. A street of houses abutting the walls of the Topkapi Palace beside the present Gulhane Park, recently restored as tourist pensions, and whose water was obtained from the underground cistern was named after the cold water fountain there, `Soguk Cesme Sokak.`

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  • JaumeBCN's Profile Photo

    The called Yerebatan is a...

    by JaumeBCN Written Sep 12, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The called Yerebatan is a subterranean Roman water cistern located in front of Hagia Sophia Mosque. It was built in the VIth century by the Emperor Justinian. 336 Byzantine columns support the ceiling of the cistern. It is very beautiful to see the reflection of the columns into the water.

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  • leffe3's Profile Photo

    Sunkern Cistern

    by leffe3 Updated Aug 26, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Go underground and see the 7th century water storage. Walk the (wet!) walkways through plinths, columns and capitals (apparently taken from ruined buildings). Ornate carvings, some under the water, are picked out by spotlights. The sound of dripping water and eerie echoes follow you.

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  • Carlo-B.'s Profile Photo

    Walking around , especially in...

    by Carlo-B. Written Aug 26, 2002

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    Walking around , especially in the golden horn area , ist all what one has to do in istanbul to see the best highlights. What i found particular interesting, however, was the visit of the Yerebatan cistern (Cystern of the basilic). The basilica cistern is one of the few early architectura specimen that have survived to our age in the historical peninsula of istanbul. This glamorous underground cisterna was built during the reign of Justinianus in the 6th. century, the age of glory of easter rome. It is 143m long and 65m wide and cover a total of 9800 sqm. There are 336 marble columns, each 9m high. Water for the cistern was provided from the Belgrade Woods, which lie 19 Km north of the city, via Acqueductus built by emperor Justinianus.
    By the way the cistern was included as 'scenario' for the first episode of the PC-game 'tomb rider':

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  • matza's Profile Photo

    Basilica Cistern Yerebatan...

    by matza Written Feb 25, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Basilica Cistern Yerebatan Cad., Sultanahmet Sq.; 522-1259. This vast underground cavern with over 300 columns in 12 rows was the water source for both the Grand Palace of the Byzantines and the Ottomans’ Topkap¦ Palace.

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    • Hiking and Walking

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  • debankh's Profile Photo

    The Basillica Cistern is...

    by debankh Written Aug 24, 2002

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    The Basillica Cistern is located below Hagia Sofia. It is my favorite place in Istanbul! You can walk all around underneath and see the water flowing around. There are numerous columns that were brought there from all over- it is a sort of hodge podge of different styles. The most notable columns are the two Medusa-head columns. One is pictured here.

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  • viajeromaga's Profile Photo

    LA CISTERNA DE YEREBATAN:Its...

    by viajeromaga Updated Aug 24, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    LA CISTERNA DE YEREBATAN:
    Its the largeest of the 60 water storages that were built in Istanbul during the bizantine times.
    Its located just front of Aghia Sophia and it was built in the year 532 B.C. Has 336 columns with a distance of 4 meters between columns. It occupies an area of 10.000 square meters and has a height of 8 meters.

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  • TrendsetterME's Profile Photo

    Audio Guide, Basilica Cistern, Istanbul, TR

    by TrendsetterME Written Aug 14, 2013
    Audio Guide, Basilica Cistern, Istanbul, TR
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    "Audio Guides" are available for hire for a small fee at the Basilica Cistern sothat you can have bilingual information on your own language as walking at the Cistern ... :)

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    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture

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  • gaolei's Profile Photo

    The Basilica Cistern - Yerebatan Saray

    by gaolei Updated Jun 16, 2012
    Cistern Photo taken with flash
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    Between the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia, there is an underground cistern that was used to store water during the Justinian era. It is an underground room with the roof held up by columns.

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    • Historical Travel

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  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo

    Yerebatan Cistern (Basilica Cistern)

    by Jim_Eliason Updated Apr 14, 2012

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    cistern
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    Ancient Roman Cistern underneath the Hippodrome. Built in the 6th century, this cistern still holds water today. Keep an eye out for the Medussa head carvings.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture
    • Archeology

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