The legend has it that when he first entered his masterpiece, emperor Justinian lift his eyes towards the dome and uttered: “Oh, Solomon, I’ve surpassed you!”. To understand just how entitled this far from modest remark was, we must put our imagination to work, picturing the basilica painted, the marble […]

Dolmabahce Palace is the largest and most luxurious residence in Turkey: 15,000 square meters, 285 rooms, without counting baths, halls and annexes. In the palace the oriental opulence of the six sultans who have lived here (past rulers of the Ottoman Empire) meets Western sophistication. The palace looks more like […]

The closest character to Ataturk is probably Napoleon Bonaparte: a military man with great achievements on the battle field, a reformer involved in every aspect of life, with a legacy that lives to this day. Ataturk had only 15 years of political power to transform a decadent empire, attacked by […]

Though the Western world fantasizes about the erotic and mysterious nature of a harem, in the Ottoman world it was rather an elaborate institution than a place for orgiastic love. The relationships inside the harem (which translates “the forbidden place”) were rather ceremonial, with a numerous staff, of about 10 […]

Orhan Pamuk visited Bucharest to meet with his Romanian writers and to promote his novels. Orhan Pamuk is the winner of Nobel Prize for Literature and the best-selling author in Turkey. His books include: My Name is Red, The Museum of Innocence, The New Life, The White Castle, Istanbul, Memories […]

Facing its Byzantine model, Agia Sofia, the Blue Mosque is a landmark of Istanbul. The Blue Mosque is the only mosque in Istanbul with 6 minarets. Since minarets (the towers of a mosque) are a rank sign, the sultan was criticized for choosing an equal number of minarets to that […]

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