Not a single multi-colored floor covering from
Late Antiquity can compare with the splendor of
the Great Palace Mosaics, where dream and reality
Very few people who stroll through Istanbul’s
touristic area in and around Sultanahmet Square
are aware that a whole other world lies buried meters
beneath their feet. At the beginning of the 4th
century A.D. the Emperor Constantine (306-337 A.D.)
founded the city of Byzantium-Constantinople-Istanbul,
which would continue to preserve its mystery and
allure for other nations over subsequent centuries.
Creating the administrative center in 328 A.D.,
the Emperor consecrated the city on 11 May 330.
Within the framework of a comprehensive building
program that commenced from the hill where Topkapi
Palace stands today, construction got underway first
of the Palatium Magnum or Imperial Palace, followed
by the metropolitan church known as Hagia Eirene
or ‘Divine Peace’, in this city which
would henceforth be possessed of an unmatched topography.