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5 Must See Archaeological Artefacts In Istanbul

Many of the priceless and very precious pieces of archaeology and history are exhibited in the museums of Istanbul today. They are works of art that can enchant almost anyone. Due to the lack of archaeologist during the last period of the Ottoman Empire, these pieces have been found as a result of the efforts of individual archaeologists, such as Osman Hamdi Bey.

1-Treaty of Kadesh


The treaty was signed at the beginning of the 13th century BC, at the end of the Battle of Kadesh in between the Egyptian Pharaoh II. Ramses and the King of the Hittites, III. Hattusili. Treaty of Kadesh documents the sharing of the territory of Syria. The Treaty of Kadesh is the oldest international treaty. It was originally written in the Akkadian language and then was copied to Egyptian and Hittite language.

2- Sundial

sundial istanbul

Having a concave front face with a radial line, which is separated into 12 equal parts, this sundial located in Saudi Arabia was found in the Madain Saleh area. The inscription on the sundial is Aramaic  and the sundial itself is made of red sandstone. According to the movement of the vertical bar in the centre, which makes a shadow once the sun hits the bar, indicates the time on the lines.

3- The Head Of Sappho


The Head Of Sappho is one of the most important examples of a Roman portrait. This piece belongs to the poet Sappho who was born on Lesbos (Lesvos) island.

Between the 7th and 5th centuries BC there were many lyric poets. The most famous poet of this period is Sappho. The only whole poem that has come until this day is the hymn to Aphrodite.

4- Code of Hammurabi


Hammurabi is the sixth King of the ancient Babylon family. His reign of 43 years continued between the years of 1792-1750 BC. The 2nd of his reign was the year which “the law” started taking place.

5- Alexander Sarcophagus


The Alexander Sarcophagus in the Istanbul Archaeological Museum is considered the most important monument. This priceless artefact is considered as the symbol of Istanbul according to some archaeologists. This work is exhibited in the Istanbul Archaeology Museum.