Europe 2011

Istanbul: The National Archeological Museum

The National Archaeological Museum is a remarkable place, mainly because it is the embodiment of one man, Osman Hamdi Bey, who turned a motley collection into a museum, had buildings purpose-made, led expeditions and ensured that artefacts found in Turkey could not be removed from the country. Lynn's Ancient History school text was a thick tome with line drawings, not at all inspiring! But here on the walls and floor were those line drawings come to life. Collections from Assyria and Mesopotamia, carvings from the Hittites, the glorious tiled animals from the Ishtar Gate to begin with.

 

Bull from the Ishtar Gate. †

 

And another animal. †

 

The Alexander Sarcophagus, with relief carved representing the battles of Alexander the Great. *

 

Detail of the carvings, which originally were brightly painted. *

 

And there were many statues. Here are two sphinxes. †

 

And a lion. †

 

A horse. †

 

Two people *

 

*

 

And another lion. *

Now go on to the people.

 

Copyright © 2011 by *Lynn Booth or †Nick Booth. Please contact us if you wish to use a photo.