Walled Obelisk

"Constantine Obelisk" redirects here. For the column also in Istanbul, see Constantine's Column.
The Walled Obelisk

The Walled Obelisk (also known as the Constantine Obelisk) is situated near the Serpentine Column at the southern side of the Hippodrome of Constantinople (now Sultanahmet Square) in Istanbul, Turkey. Its original construction date is unknown, but it is named after Constantine VII, who repaired it in the tenth century.


The 32 m (105 ft)-high obelisk was reconstructed of roughly cut stones by Constantine VII. At that time, it was reportedly decorated with gilded bronze plaques that portrayed the victories of Basil I, the grandfather of Constantine VII. Also there was a sphere at the top of obelisk. However, reportedly these gilded bronze plaques were stolen and melted down by Fourth Crusaders in 1204.

Since young Janissaries liked to use the obelisk to climb and show their prowess, the obelisk suffered further damage to its surface.

The Walled Obelisk was depicted on the reverse of the Turkish 500 lira banknotes of 1953–1976.[1]

The obelisk is featured in the 2011 video game Assassin's Creed: Revelations, and is the location of one of the collectible side missions.

Notes and references

  1. Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey. Banknote Museum: 5. Emission Group – Five Hundred Turkish Lira – I. Series, II. Series, III. Series & IV. Series. – Retrieved on 20 April 2009.

Media related to Walled Obelisk at Wikimedia Commons

Coordinates: 41°00′19.43″N 28°58′29.44″E / 41.0053972°N 28.9748444°E / 41.0053972; 28.9748444

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