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Topkapı Palace

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Topkapı Palace
Topkapi Palace Database image
Political information
Description

The palace of Ottoman Sultans.

Location

Imperial District, Constantinople

Date constructed

1459

Historical information
Functions

Palace

Topkapı Palace was a palace located in Constantinople, being the official and primary residence in the city for the Ottoman Sultans. Approximately, the Sultans resided in the palace for around four centuries, from 1465 up until 1856, of their 624-year reign of the Ottoman Empire.

HistoryEdit

In the dwindling years of the Byzantine Empire, many of the Imperial palaces laid in ruins, shattered by centuries of fighting and economic collapse. Following the Ottoman conquest, Sultan Mehmed II envisioned a palace at a strategically secure spot atop First Hill, the very tip of the peninsula.[1]

Construction on the Sultan's new palace, then called Yeni Saray (New Palace), initially began in 1459, and concluded nearly a decade later, although every subsequent Sultan would continue to add to the overall complex. However, towards the end of his reign, Bayezid II relocated his throne to the original Ottoman capital of Adrianople following an earthquake.[1] Prince Ahmet ordered his confidante Hasan Pasha to recover a Memory Seal from the tunnels beneath the palace exposed by the tremor.[2]

For many centuries thereafter, Topkapı Palace served as the centerpiece of the Sultan's power, and contained everything the Sultan needed to comfortably oversee the Empire. This included the Harem for raising and educating wives of future royalty, the Divan for the Sultan's meetings with the Sublime Porte, barracks for the Janissaries, and the Sultan's personal residence. During the 18th century, Jennifer Scott was sold to the Harem.[3]

Finally in 1856, Sultan Abdülmecid I moved his residence and court to the newly built Dolmabahçe Palace, bringing an end to four centuries of Topkapı Palace's use as the main residence and the powerbase of the Ottoman Sultans.[1]

TriviaEdit

  • As noted in the Database, Bayezid's absence was the reason why the Topkapı Palace was mostly empty of guards during Ezio's stay in Constantinople, despite being a restricted area.
  • The use of the name "Topkapı" in the course of Assassin's Creed: Revelations is anachronistic; it did not earn this name until the 19th century. In 1511, it would have been called "New Palace" (or "Yeni Sarayı" in Turkish).

GalleryEdit

ReferenceEdit

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