The Maiden's Tower is under restoration from September 2021, the restoration is planned to be completed by the end of April 2022
Legendary Tower From Byzantine Period in İstanbul
The Maiden's Tower is a tower-shaped structure that has been the subject of legendary stories, built on a small islet located off Salacak-Üsküdar, in the part of the Bosphorus close to the Marmara Sea. The Maiden's Tower, which has become the symbol of Üsküdar, is the only work left from the Byzantine period in that region. It has a historical past dating back to 24 BC. Some European historians call it Leander Tower. There are stories about the tower based on many rumors. Below you can find examples of legends
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The Purposes Maiden's Tower Used
Undoubtedly one of the indispensable views of the Bosphorus is the Maiden's Tower. Built on a tiny island off Salacak, this tower contains many legends. One of them is the legend of Leandros, which also gave the tower its name (Leander's Tower). The story of lovers who challenged the sea between them will end with the tragedy of Leandros and Hero. On a stormy night, when Leandros sees the light on the tower, he thinks his lover hero is calling him and jumps into the sea. However, this time it is not the Hero who lights the light, but someone else who understands that the lovers meet secretly every night and turn off the light. Leandros is buried in the waves of the Bosphorus; Hero, who cannot stand the pain of this, ends his life by jumping from the tower. At the end of the legend, a lighthouse is built where the tower is in the name of the lovers. History M.O. The Maiden Tower, which dates back to 24 years, has been used as a defense fortress, exile station, prison, quarantine room, radio station, tax point, and lighthouse throughout its long history. The tower, which is the symbol of Uskudar, was restored by a private company in 2000 and was opened to service as a cafe and restaurant during the day.
History of Maiden's Tower
It is not known what kind of a facility was located on the small piece of land on which the Maiden's Tower is located, in the Byzantine period. According to the historian Niketas Khoniates, emperor Manu-el Komnenos (1143-1180) built a small fortress called 'Hisarcık' here with the arc. Manuel, who built a tower in Mangana in Sarayburnu, pulled a chain between them and took control of the entrance and exit of the Bosphorus. According to legend, the drinking water of the Maiden's Tower was provided by a channel from the shore from the bottom of the sea. In addition, a wall was built between the land and the Maiden's Tower. Armenian writer Inciciyan writes that this wall was demolished during the Kanuni period (1520-1540) and that only the remains of the foundation were seen in stagnant weather. It is possible to see this wall trail today, to detect it by swimming.
Maiden's Tower at Ottoman Period
According to the port of Istanbul, the Maiden Tower had been destroyed by the Ottoman Navy during the destruction or, as it said, on the Anatolian side, it had built fortified stays between the rash stone in the sea, and the balls ceased, as it was thrown, it would not stop the ship in the port. The rash was stony during the conquest. It is known that the Maiden Tower was rebuilt after the conquest, and it was turned into an element of Istanbul's defense, and balls were placed.
In the Constantinople plan made by Buondelmonte in 1420, the Maiden's Tower is shown as a castle sign. The Maiden Tower in Istanbul plan, built by Amyrutzen after 1453 at the order of Fatih, shows privilege from the date of 1420, which is proof that it was rebuilt by Fatih. It was shown as a castle in the landscape of Istanbul, printed by Vavessore in 1520. This castle is also mentioned in various Istanbul maps of Hünername and Piri Reis (died. 1954).
Legendary of Maiden's Tower
According to rumor; The Byzantine Emperor Constantius (578-582) had a very beautiful daughter. According to a priest's testimony, he would die from a snake bite. The monarch hides his daughter in a tower built in the middle of the sea. But she cannot prevent her daughter's fate. The serpent hiding in a basket of grapes sent to the tower sticks the girl and kills her.
According to another rumor; B.C. In 411, Üsküdar and its beaches were dominated by Persia. On the other hand, the Athenian Alkibiades built a customs station on this piece of rock and took the entrance and exit into the Bosphorus under his control. A 30-ship fleet of Athens also secured this station. After Athenian General Haris (Khares) settled in Üsküdar, his wife Damalis died there. Haris prepared a shrine for his wife. This mausoleum was on the hill above the Ayazma Mosque or in the place of the Maiden Tower. The nose in front of the hill was called Cape Damalis because of a cow sculpture placed on it in 340 BC. This cow was placed on a column. It is said to have been erected to show the tomb of Damalis.