The Obelisk of Theodosius

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Atmeydani Cd, Istanbul, Turkey

The Obelisk of Theodosius Istanbul Reviews

EmEm EmEm
158 reviews
Column of Theodosius May 27, 2017
Column or Obelisk of Theodosius is one of three columns located in the Sultan Ahmet Square in Istanbul. It was originatelly set up by Tutmoses III of the 18th dynasty of Egypt fifteen centures BC along with a similar one at Karnak. An Egyptian hieroglyph script reads that it was in his father's honour that Tutmoses erected the obelisk at Karnak and a monument in Mesopotamia.

Several obelisks were stolen from Egypt by Romans and transported to Rome. By wish of Constantine the Great, this column was displaced from Rome in order to decorate his new capital. The obelisk was not reerected in its current place before the regn of Theodosius I.

It is almost twenty meters high, shorter and most probably only two thirds of its original size. The base has been significantly smoothened with an eventual gash up one of the hieroglyphs in the middle. It may be that the monument was broken during handling or deliberately damaged to take off the burden to a certain degree.

The obelisk is placed on a marble pedestal. On two sides of the main part are inscriptions in Ancient Greek and Latin. Featuring on all four faces are hieroglyphs. The scenes on the pedestal depict chariot races with the Emperor in attendance.
the second one
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spocklogic spocklog…
325 reviews
Egyptian Obelisk in Istanbul Feb 12, 2011
This obelisk stands in area of Istanbul called the Hippodrome, which was a popular sporting and social center of Byzantine life when Istanbul was known as Constantinople from the 4th to 15th centuries. Located near the Blue Mosque, it was a place for chariot races, court ceremonies, coronations and parades. The centerpiece of the place is the Obelisk of Theodosius, erected in 390 A.D. This obelisk, adorned with hieroglyphics depicting the Pharaoh Tutmoses III victory of a battle on the Euphrates River.

This red granite obelisk was carved between 1500-1400 BCE and stood near the Temple of Karnak until 357 A.D. when the Roman emperor Constantius II had it transported along the Nile River to Alexandria for a celebration of the 20th anniversary of his reign. Another obelisk, similar to this one, was taken to the Circus Maximus in Rome. In 390 A.D. the Emperor Theodosius I had it moved from Alexandria to the Hippodrome in Constantinople, where it has remained since then.

The marble pedestal base under the obelisk has some ornate carvings on it of Theodosius, his family (wife & sons), imperial officials and some bodyguards watching a chariot-race from the Emperor's seating box. I have some photos to show of the obelisk, but didn't take any of the Hippodrome as it was all torn up at the time for a restoration I assume. I've seen photos of it later and looks really nicely restored. It's a public garden with a walkway around it following the original path of the race track.
Obelisk of Theodosius
Obelisk of Theodosius marker
Obelisk of Theodosius, with Consta…
Obelisk of Theodosius & Me
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es1418 says:
It's very impressive now, so I can't imagine how much more striking it must have been in its day.
Posted on: Jan 17, 2017
Chokk Chokk
1732 reviews
Standing tall and high Oct 04, 2008
Not far from The Blue Mosque you can find The Obelisk of Theodosius; it is a huge antic obelisk standing in the middle of the square, so it is quite difficult to avoid.

The obelisk is the Ancient Egyptian obelisk of Pharaoh Tutmoses III that was re-erected in the Hippodrome of Constantinople, which today is Istanbul by the Roman emperor Theodosius I in the 4th century AD.

The obelisk was first set up by Tutmoses III 1479–1425 BC to the south of the seventh pylon of the great temple of Karnak in Luxor.

The Roman emperor Constantius II (337-361 AD) had it and another obelisk transported along the river Nile to Alexandria to commemorate his ventennalia or 20 years on the throne in 357.

The other obelisk was at time erected on the spina of the Circus Maximus in Rome in the autumn of that year, and is today known as the Lateran obelisk. The obelisk that would become the obelisk of Theodosius remained in Alexandria until 390, when Theodosius I (378-392 AD) had it transported to Constantinople and put up on the spina of the Hippodrome.

The Obelisk of Theodosius is made of red granite from Aswan and was originally 30 meters tall, like the Lateran obelisk. The lower part was damaged in antiquity, probably during its transport or at the re-erection, and so the obelisk is today only 18.54 meter high, or 25.6 meter if the base is included.

Between the four corners of the obelisk and the pedestal are four bronze cubes, used in its transportation and re-erection. Each of its four faces has a single central column of inscription, celebrating Tutmoses III's victory on the banks of the River Euphrates in 1450 BC.

I was quite intriged to find the link between Karnak and Istanbul; two places that I really adore.
The Obelisk of Theodosius
The Obelisk of Theodosius
The Obelisk of Theodosius
The Obelisk of Theodosius
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