Yedikule Fortress - Seven Tower Dungeons

2022-05-22

Yedikule Fortress - Seven Tower Dungeons

Yedikule Dungeon Tower

The first tower in the Yedikule fortress was built by  II. Theodosius, In the year 413 of the Eastern Roman Empire, and his son, who came to the throne after Theodosius, had four high observation towers built. After the conquest of the city by the Ottomans three additional towers were built by Fatih Sultan Mehmet, the fortress has in total of seven towers, and with the completion of the towers in 1457, Yedikule gains the appearance of today's inner castle.

Yedikule, in the Eastern Roman Period; towers were used as an observatory, prison, and execution place during the Ottoman Period; It was used as a prison, execution place, treasury warehouse, ammunition warehouse, barn, and garden warehouse.

Towers circling the pentagonal frame of the building; Young Osman Tower, Armory Tower, III. Ahmet Tower (Pastorama Tower), Treasure Tower (Millet Tower), Dungeon Tower (Inscriptions Tower), Ball Tower (Girls' Tower), and Flag Tower.

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Yedikule Byzantine Period

The area we call Yedikule today was called "Heptaburgon" in the Byzantine Period. The foundations of the Yedikule Fortress were laid for the first time during the Eastern Roman Empire Period. II. Theodosius  (408-450) had the city walls built, most of which are present today. With the increasing attacks in the Byzantine Period, the walls formed a three-stage defense architecture, with an added level and the second level with a ditch in front of it. Although the aim was to prevent attacks, the boundaries of the region we call Yedikule were also determined by the construction of this city wall.

Legendary of Yedikule

Yedikule's history, full of legendary events, dates back to the Byzantine Period. After all, the reason why Yedikule is so famous and interesting is the mystery it contains and its legends, which have been passed down through generations and are the subject of stories by exaggerating. The reason for many of the legends and rumors spreading in the city is due to the Marble Tower, which has not reached our day in its original form. This four-story tower built right next to the Theodosius Walls, was used as an execution tower and a prison during the Byzantine Period.

Treasures in Yedikule

The treasures of the Empires in Yedikule, the rooms covered with precious metals still preserve their mystery. Unfortunately, it is not possible to find traces of the coastal palace around Yedikule, which may have been destroyed in the fires and earthquakes in Istanbul. The coastal palace, which is said to have been built according to rumors, seems to have taken its place in the mysterious page of history by closing the legends in its glazed rooms.

Yedikule Fortress

Yedikule- Ottoman Period

With the conquest of Istanbul by the Ottoman Empire, people brought from outside were settled especially on the coastline stretching from the shores of the Golden Horn to Topkapı and Yedikule. In the same period, that is, after the conquest of Istanbul in 1458, the two pylons of the Golden Gate, which was the triumphal arch used by the Byzantine Emperors to enter the city, and the two fortification towers in the same row, a three-towered wall was added to these four bastions, and Yedikule Fortress was built by Fatih Sultan Mehmet as an inner castle. 

The wealth and valuables belonging to the Turkish rulers are kept here. In one of the towers in Yedikule Fortress, there was gold bullion and money, in the other old and valuable goods, official documents, and in another, the booty brought by Yavuz Sultan Selim from Iran. Between 1458 and 1789, the state treasury, called the Treasury-i Hümayun, was located here. It was moved to the palace during Sultan Murad.

Yedikule dungeons

The dungeon, which is located in the middle of the pylon in the southern part of Yedikule is also known as the "Bloody Well", is a place that has witnessed many events. It is known that Çandarlı Halil Pasha and his sons were imprisoned in these towers for the first time after the conquest. After the complete Yedikule dungeon construction, the last emperor of the Trabzon Greek Empire, David Komnenos, joined the Ottoman lands in 1461 and his sons were executed in the Yedikule fortress (dungeon) in 1463.

Story Of Sultan Young Osman

Prisoners in Yedikule Dungeons

The most famous prisoner in the Yedikule dungeons is undoubtedly Sultan II. Osman (Young Osman), was deposed in 1622. II. Osman was dethroned and II. After Mustafa was put in power, after the enthronement ceremony was held in Topkapı Palace, Grand Vizier Davut Pasha and Janissary Agha Derviş Ağa and his company chiefs, II. They put Osman in a market cart and took him to the Yedikule dungeon. At midnight, Davut Pasha went to Yedikule with his unit, a few rebels, and II. Although Osman tried to resist, he was killed in the fortress.

Yedikule Gallery

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