İstanbul is one of the most important historical city in the world it is believed to be built in 3000-5000 BC. The geographical location of the city is situated between 40.45-41.50 north latitud (enlem) and 28-30 east longitude (boylam) and İstanbul forms a bridge between Europe and Asia, with the division between the two running from the Black Sea (Karadeniz) to the north down along the Bosporus (Istanbul Boğazı) strait through the Sea of Marmara (Marmara Denizi) and the Dardanelles (Çanakkale Boğazı) strait to the Aegean Sea (Ege Denizi) and the larger Mediterranean Sea (Akdeniz) to the South.
The historical researches show that the first settlements in İstanbul appeared in prehistoric age and kalkolitik period. There are some foundations such as stone tools, fossil, bones. There are proofs of the settlements which are lived before 300.000 and 130.000 years. Also a mound which is in the Kadıköy Fikirtepesi(Kalkedon) signs the kalkolotik period. The people who lived in 3000 BC were provided for hunting and fishing . Therefore, there are some researches that shows they live on by agriculture and stockbreeding. Thus these excavations show the connection between western, Central Anatolia and Thracian, Marmara region.
İstanbul has a changeable climate but it is usually temperate. Besides, it has a fruitful soil type. However, the area is on a primary fault line and there happened big earthquakes in each century which resulted in destruction of historical structures.
İstanbul can be explained in 5 periods. The first one is first settlements until Byzantiun, second one is Byzantium period, third one is Constantinapolis period in 324 which was the capital of the Roman Empire, fourth one is İstanbul which is the capital of the Ottomans and lastly after the conquest to today.
Some excavations shows that people started to settle in the Paleolithic Age in İstanbul(5000-3000 BC). According tools which are found in axcavations, showed that people were living by fishing, hunting and agriculture also they were living in caves. It was guess that the first settlements are placed at the end of the Golden Horn (Haliç) between Alibey Stream and Kağıthane Stream, where was named as Silivri Hill. Because that area has convenient soil type for agriculture and in both streams there were so many fishes in each seasons. In 1200 BC Greeks who were ascaped to İlliryalılar and coming from Europe, settled in İstanbul, but some of them went to Anatolia by passing İstanbul and settled there.
(Kuban 1998, İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi, Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları,1998; pg:15,16,17)
Megarans settled in Kalkedon (Kadıköy) and then settled in Byzantium in Akra(Sarayburnu), Hrisapolis (Üsküdar), Sykai (Galata) were the other settlements In 680BC. Even there is not enough archaeological evidence it can be said that İstanbul had become a city.
In 513BC Byzantium and Kalkedon were conquered by Persians but after a short while the city was conquered by Megarans again. According to Mango the boundaries of Byzantium had not change until the period of Constantine. It is not surely correct but it is supposed that the population of bization was 20000.
The topography of the region shows the shape of the city walls of Acropolis on the east to west direction. The walls were so important for the city because the walls protected the city from enemies . The original city of Byzantium expanded toward the west and new city walls were erected four times when the Spartan occupied and rebuilt the city and each time enlarging the city further. Nothing has survived from the walls built around the acropolis of Byzantium.
(Kuban 1998,İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi,Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları,1998;pg:31,32,33,34)
İmportant places in Byzantium
Port: Bization has two port and they are trade connection with other Greek cities. One of them is Neorin which is on the west , the other is prosforin and it is on the east.
Archaic times writers say that there was so many mouments, such as Zeus, Atena, Apollon-Helios, Afrodites and Artemis-Selene in addition to these monuments is Basilike Stoa which contains Metroon and Tihe ( Tihe is the protector of the city)
The monumental statue of Zeuksupposu was in the middle of the agora.
(Kuban 1998,İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi,Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları,1998 pg22,23,24)
(geçmişten günümüze İstanbul, Deniz Bank finas hizmet gurubu pg10,11)
The Urban Form of Byzantium
In the Acropolis beside the palace there were Zeus, Athena, Apollon-Helios, Afrodites and Artemis-Selene temples. Stadium and a theatre with a view of sea were located on the foot of the Acropolis. Between the Acropolis and the sea there were temples, gymnasium, stadium and some other structures
The trade roads were on Mediterian so Byzantium had the importance in trade and İstanbul had two harbours called Neorion in the west and Prosforion in the east to trade with Greeks. In the end of the harbour there was a tower planned circular.
There were also baths and the most important one was Ahilleus Bath with a gymnasium. It is known that Hadrianus brought water to the city for the baths.
The necropolises of the later Byzantium were located out of the city walls and along the coast of the Golden Horn.
Byzantium was like other Greek cities .It includes Agora in which a meeting place and a statue of the God of Trak.
(Kuban 1998,İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi,Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları,1998;pg:52,53,54,55)
Byzantium was rebuilt between 324 and 330 by costatin and in 11 May 330 became the new capital city of Roman Empire and its name changed to constantinapolis. Costantin were settled so many people and most of them were from Balkans so the population of city increased. Finally, the population approach to 300.000 in 5th century. Thus, Costantinopois became more crowded city than roma (Dagron,525;Mango,Developpement 51). However it is hard to provide food for this population. Because of that corn, wheat, oil, wine was imported from Egypt, Syria, Anatolia and these foods were given to folk for free. This application was maden spontaneous by Burchardt after 332.
City structure had helenistic items and these items created the Christian capital city. Roma was continued to live as a mid-western city but konstantinopolis became the center of orthodox christian until until renaissance.
There were some reasons to do capital first, to avoid from the threats of the west and to control the east part of the empire other was related to religion. Constantinus believed in Christianity but Romans were not so he told to his people Constantinapolis was the city of ‘God’ and God gave the permission to conquer the city. In 365 while Emperor Vales in campaign, the people in the city voted for another Emperor. However, when the Vales came back he killed the emperor and took the gun’s of people in the city. He couldn’t trust his people, anymore. After a while there had been an attack to the city and Vales attacked with his own soldiers because as i mentioned above he wasn’t
trusting his people. He lost the war and in 395 Roman Empire became East-West Roman Empire. Constantinapolis became the capital of the East Roman Empire named as Byzantine.
The Urban Form of Constantinople
It can be said that Constantinople reached its natural boundaries by the senses of its founder. The new city walls were built 2,5 km west from the old one. This can be explained in a geometrical form as being a circle with a diameter of 2.5km and its center was the west gate of Byzantium or Constantine’s forum.
The main axises of Constantinople were straight lines. Again one of them is between Constantine’s forum and Philedelphion, and the other one is perpendicular to this axis. This is very similar to the axis cardo and decumans of Roman cities.
The place selected for Constantine’s tomb shows the direction of the development of the city and this direction connected the peaks of the peninsula which were parallel to Golden Horn. This district Constantianai included palaces, baths, and churchs. The district and the region of ancient Byzantium were the residental areas for the royal people. Moreover, ancient Byzantim was important that it had hippodrom, harbours, monuments, administrative unit and the sacred palace. Necropolises were in the two sides of a part of Via Egnatia which was in the outer part of the city gate.
Forum was built on the ancient city’s necropolis. The forum had an oval plan and it was surrounded by two stroyed stoas. In the center of the forum there was the monumental column of Constantine.
The reason of the location of the imperial palace can be existence of the horbour. The hippodrom of Severus an the Zeuksippos Bath formed the boundaries of the palace. This palace was used for both administration and residence. It included activity areas for recreation
Stoas were colonnaded ways which were typical Hellenistic structures. There were four stoas in Constantinople. First, these places were used for shopping etc but then they did not due to the existence of forums and basilicas.
Augustaion was the most important ceremonial area of Constantinople which is called as Hagia Sophia Square today. This is the most ancient urban place and its form was a rectangle with 150m diagonal. Moreover, there was a monumental column on which the sculpture of Helena stood in the center of thiz square. The place was not open to the public use, it was only for royal.
Constantiople had public baths. These were repaired by Constantine before the formal opening of the new capital. The baths of Constantine were built near the Mausoleion in Constantianai District. However, there was lack of water supply and this required to built aquaducts for solving this problem. Besides, there were many cisterns in different vast proportions. One of them was The Cisterna Basilica( Yerebatan Sarayı ) which is still famous today.
The Administration of Constantinople
The governor and the head of municipality( prafectus urbi) were the second important ones coming after the emperor and they were responsible people when the emperor were absent. They were also primary senator and the member of Consistorium.
The inside part of the city walls was divided into twelve regions which was organized as being an example of Rome. The boundaries and the size of these regions were not known. The Greek Byzantion City constit uted the first region. Here was the residential are of royal people with 118 domus. The second region was the west part of Byzantion but the west boundaries of this cannot determined if its west edge was the same with Byzantion’s own boundary. The third region is the adding part of Severus to the Byzantion. The first square Augustaion was in the intersection point of I., II., IV. and V., the Constantine Forum was in the III., VII., VIII, the Bous Forum was in the IX., XI., XII. regions.
In Theodosius Period, the people who were interested in art participated in politics. That is why his period was called as the Renaissance of Theodosius and Golden Age. The most noticable evidence was the moumental column which was built in the new forum of the Emperor.
The boundaries of the city was enlarged by Theodosius II. It was a new defensive system and also it was constructed a mile further to the west of Constantine’s wall.
The first half of the 5th century passed by constructing of city walls. And the second half passed by the 465 year fire and its consequences. The area which was 350 hectar between the Golden Horn and Augustaion burnt out. The center of the city and the public buildings were damaged from this big fire
FATİH SULTAN MEHMED’S ISTANBUL
The city is located around the harbour and commercial area and spread around of this area.It was built like islamic cities because it has so many mosques.Therefore there was seen some külliyes for shopping,education,and rooms.
The city was designed according to old structure.Because the city walls,Hagia Sophia ,Havariun church,monumental columns,Hippodrum and churchs are symbolized the history of the city.Hagia Sophia was a church and it was turned into mosque. Structure in this culture was .That is important for Turkish islamic culture. not build in urban area.Because of people are gather around the mosques, courtyards, inns, caravanserais they they were in closed areas.The open spaces are used for bazaars and harbours.There wasn’t developed common area and a rood system.
AFTER THE CONQUEST UNTIL TODAY
16.th Urban Form Components Kanuni Sultan Süleyman In this term there were an important architect who name is ‘Mimar Sinan’. Many important mosques,molem theologic school,fountain and türbe are builted.Some and a big part of them are designed by Sinan. ( Geçmişten günümüze İstanbul Alpay kabacalı page:142-150.denizbank hizmetleri grubu 2003)
He was a scientist,geographer who worked on the form of İstanbul formally.He claimed that the area which was surrounded by walls of Teodesios seemed like a triangle and he thought that it was like an eagle shape. (Kuban 1998,İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi,Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları,1998;pg:265-268)
17.Century’ Ottoman City
It is thought by Evliya Çelebi is that the first builder of İstanbul is Hz.
Süleyman,second is Constantine , third one is Fatih Sultan Mehmed and fourth one
is by the help of Sadrazam Bayram Paşa IV.Murad because he listed buildings in the
city and listed the people living in the city. The boundaries of the city enlarged from
Bosphorus to beykoz along Golden Horn and in Marmara coast to Kadıköy. The population of the city was counted as 600.000 and 28.900 building were taking place.
Palace walls and doors are not the main things of the city.They were just like symbol of the empire
When after 2. Vienne kuşatması Ottomans started to lose their lands because of the Pasarofça pact.3.Selim did not do anything just waited when England was coming towards to İstanbul and also Napoleon conquested Cairo.
Urban Form Components
After Istanbul attracted by European some part of it became important. The harbour was like a center of all settlements.In this century although city was surrounded by walls ,Istanbul was a popular space with its condition that is around coast.
Turks were living along the coasts and in Üsküdar.They also lived from Beyoğlu to Galata Roman neighborhoods were existing.In Beşiktaş Palaces of the emperors were existing.First Bosphorus settlements were near the coast.Because they were using Bosphorus for transportation.Also first city plan of İstanbul was made by François Kauffer.The first city plan of İstanbul was maden by François Kauffer.
Istanbul had many reforms before Industry Revolution.Altough it was like European country ,it was not like the Anotolia.After 2. World War ,People started to migration to Istanbul.This is seen in cease-fire period. Traditional people in İstanbul wanted to have their own country .To solve this problem Turks tried to develop themselves with Islahat and Tanzimat Fermanı.In 1838 they were signed a deal with England for commercial relations which was the cause of the decrease in Ottoman’s economy.
(Kuban 1998,İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi,Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları,1998;pg:346-350)
Urban Form Components
Istanbul in 19. century in terms of location of building had many legal adjustments.There was a person,Moltke,who was made İstanbul’s city map.But it was not applied.He worked on settlements inside the city walls and his plans shows all the solutions for that regions until the 20th century.
(Kuban 1998,İstanbul Bir Kent Tarihi,Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları,1998;pg:355-359) ( Geçmişten günümüze İstanbul Alpay kabacalı page:187-193,denizbank hizmetleri grubu 2003)