When you visualize the silhouette of Istanbul, the Galata Tower is sure to be one of the places that come to your memory first. This historical tower not only beautifies the view of Istanbul, but it is also one of the places to visit in Istanbul. So, what is the history of the Galata Tower which gives the Galata region a fascinating atmosphere? Here is the impressive story of the Galata Tower from past to present!
One of the oldest towers in the world: Galata
Galata Tower is considered one of the oldest towers in the world. This distinctive building, which was known to be built in 528, is notable not only for its appearance but also for its features. The tower is known to have a height of 69.9 meters from the ground to the top of the roof. According to static calculations, its weight is about 10 thousand tons. Also, human bones were found in the excavations on the floor of the tower. It was understood that the tower was used as a dungeon in ancient times.
History of Galata, a lighthouse tower
Galata Tower was built in 528 by the Byzantine Emperor Anastasius as a lighthouse tower. Istanbul, which has been home to many civilizations throughout its history and has been enduring in countless battles, has suffered severe destruction in the IV Crusade in 1204. In 1348, the Genoese, in addition to the walls, repaired the damaged tower again. The tower renamed as “Tower of Jesus.” The Tower of Jesus, known to be the tallest building in Istanbul during this period, was upgraded between 1445 and 1446 and renewed almost every century under the Ottoman rule.
Galata Tower has been used for many different purposes after this date. The tower was used as a shelter for Christian prisoners of war who were working in the Kasımpaşa shipyards in the 16th century; As an observatory in the period of III Murat; After 1717, it is known to be used as a fire tower.
In addition to all these, the Galata Tower can be said to be a deplorable history. During a fire in the III Selim period, most of the tower was burned; Although it was repaired after this event, it was again destroyed by another fire in 1831. The tower was restored once again, and in 1875 it lost its roof in a storm. It is known that the Galata Tower was last repaired in 1967 and obtained its present appearance.
Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi and Galata Tower
Challenging the time from the past to the present, Galata Tower is also the place where Hazarfen Ahmet Çelebi performed his first flight attempt experience with wooden wings that he wore in his arms. Hazarfen Ahmet Çelebi has left himself from the tower and the Istanbul Bosphorus with the help of southwester and descended in Üsküdar Doganlar district. This extraordinary historical event witnessed by the Galata Tower gives even more meaning to the tower…
The romantic legend of Galata Tower
Aside from the history of the Galata Tower; There are many legends about the tower. One of these legends is very romantic! According to legend, Galata Tower and Maiden’s Tower are two towers in love; However, the Bosphorus Strait prevents the meeting of lovers. For this reason, the Galata Tower writes love letters to his love for years. When Hazarfen Ahmet Çelebi went to the tower to fly, Galata Tower told him about his passion for the Maiden Tower and would hand over the letters to him. Hazarfen, which flows through the Bosphorus with the help of southwester, conveys the letters to the Maiden’s Tower. The Maiden’s Tower, which realizes that her love is not unanswered, fills up with joy and lovers finally meet…