Friday, 29 March 2013

Istanbul in the 1880s

The Hagia Sofia, built as a church in the 6th century. Drawing by Boudier.

Istanbul, or Constantinople, as it was previously called, served as the capital of four empires: the Roman  Empire (330-395), the Byzantine Empire (395-1204 and 1261-1453), the Latin Empire (1204-1261) and the Ottoman Empire (1453-1922). 

The city was modernized from 1870 onwards. Bridges across the Golden Horn were constructed, a proper water system was created, electric lights were installed, and trams were introduced. In the 1880s Istanbul was connected to the European railways network. 

However, in the 1880s Istanbul retained many of its traditional features, as can be seen from the drawings and woodcuts shown on this page.


A fountain in Istanbul. Woodcut by Rousseau, based on a painting by Pasini.

A barber in Istanbul. Woodcut by Barbant, based on a painting by Bonnat.

The Bosporus, seen from the European side. Drawing by Boudier.

Turkish women. Drawing by Vogel.

A Harem on its way. Woodcut by Ruffe, based on painting by Benjamin Constant.

Dogs in Stambul. Drawing by Gelibert.

The Galata bridge. Drawing by Boudier.

Istanbul scenery. Woodcut by Ruffe, based on painting by Weber.

Stambul, seen from Kasim Pasha. Woodcut by Ruffe, based on painting by Weber.

A kaik on the Bosporus. Woodcut by Rousseau, based on painting by Bridgman.

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