This Website and The Work

This website is designed for the dissemination of History of Istanbul from Antiquity to XXI. Century, a work prepared by the cooperation of Türkiye Diyanet Foundation Center for Islamic Studies (İSAM) and İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality Kültür ve Sanat Ürünleri A.Ş.

The Project for the preparation of the Turkish version of the work was launched in late 2012, and completed and published in 2015. The book was prepared the­matically and composed of around 355 articles written by nearly 260 scientists about different fields such as topography, architecture, religious and social life, management, economics. In this book which consists of 10 volumes, nearly 5300 pages, around 4 thousand visual materials such as maps, miniatures, engravings, paintings, and archive documents were used. The English translation of the work was completed in 2019 and not published yet. It is accessible online.

The publicity meeting of the work took place in İstanbul Cemal Reşit Rey Concert Hall on June 18, 2016 with the participation of the President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the Vice Prime Minister Veysi Kaynak, the Minister of Culture and Tourism Nabi Avcı, Mayor of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Kadir Topbaş, Professor Mehmet Akif Aydın, the former president of İSAM and the director of the project, academicians and other guests.

Features and Contents

The work aims to define Istanbul’s place among the major cities of world in the light of the fact that it has been a “city” from its first settlement in Antiquity until today, and to make the sum and substance of academic Studies on İstanbul history.

The work aims to address the general reader as well as the students. Alongside being a source of knowledge, method and content for studies in the its field, History of Istanbul were considered as a text/source for classes on Istanbul both in Turkey and abroad, and therefore with this in mind its wording was formed as a smooth, comprehensive and strong wording.

History of Istanbul, is the most voluminous and comprehensive work of its kind as it addresses all the historical periods of the city. This work was written in a thematic approach and the subjects were covered in articles. The details, which provide a better understanding of issues that have not been adequately addressed in the main articles, have been examined in depth with frame articles and apostilles.

In establishing themes’ own chronologies, three periods, which determines the identity of the city and forms milestone in its history, has been taken as bases. These are Byzantine, Ottoman and Republican periods. Each theme were periodized considering its own continuities and changes; Ancient ages, Byzantine, Ottoman and Republican periods were not treated absolute disengagements. Apart from these themes, History of Istanbul offers its readers two important key works, which are first in its kind, in terms of history of Istanbul: chronology and bibliography of Istanbul.

Addressing city’s history of 8500 years, one of the distinctive characteristics of History of Istanbul from histories of other cities are its extensive author cadre, international academic contributions, and richness and large scale of visual material. This work, which complements and supports each other in terms of content, design and print material, also offers a model for writing long histories of cities from every angle.

The project manager for the work is Professor Mehmet Akif Aydın, it is edited by Dr. Coşkun Yılmaz, and designed by Bülent Erkmen.

Chapters of History of Istanbul

  1. Imperial Transformations of Istanbul

  2. Istanbul on a World Scale

  3. Topography and Settlement

  4. Politics and Administration

  5. Demography

  6. Society

  7. Religion

  8. Economics

  9. Transportation and Communication

  10. Literature, Art and Culture

  11. Architecture

  12. Education, Science and Technology

  13. Istanbul in Memories