The Museum of Archaelogy

Everyday except Monday 09.20-17.00 The museum was founded by Osman Hamdi Bey, an artist and archaeologis,t on the 13th of June 1891. At that time it was called Müze-i Hümayun. The lateral wings were added in 1902 and 1908. A new large and modern section was also added and new arrangements were made in the museum in 1991, the hundredth anniversary of the foundation of the museum. The architect of the monumental building was Vallaury.

The big eerie sculpture of the god Bes was placed just past the entrance gate. On the right is the room of sculptures from the Antique era. All cleaned and comprehensively maintained for a new exhibition, the unique sculptures belonging to various ages from the Archaic period to the Roman era are lined up in this room. The first room includes the Kenan Erim gallery, where antique tombstones and embossed works as well as relics of the Persian civilization in Anatolia and the remains of Afrodisias are exhibited; then there is the gallery of three Marble Cities, where artifacts from Ephesus, Miletus and Aphrodisias are exhibited; and finally there are the galleries of the Hellenistic-influenced Roman and Roman era sculptures, Menderes, Manisa, and Hellenistic sculpture galleries. In addition, one can see the windows of souvenirs and bookshelves, the memorial room of Osman Hamdi Bey, and the galleries of artifacts which he excavated from the King's Necropolis of Saida. The first three sarcophagi belong to the family of the Saida King Tabnit. A unique Lycian sarcophagus and the sarcophagus of Satrap are also in this gallery. The next section includes the well-known 4th century sarcophagus of Alexander and the sarcophagus of the crying women. The four sides of the sarcophagus which is thought to belong to Alexander the Great are decorated with high embossed works depicting the war between the Macedonians and the Persians and other scenes of hunting parties. The front section of the temple of Athena in Assos was recreated in the exact dimensions of the original on the lateral wall of the entrance to the main building. The section of “İstanbul Environmental Cultures” is the first exhibition room where the marvelous artifacts belonging to various ages and artifacts excavated in tumulus excavations are displayed in a modern way. The gallery of Byzantine artifacts is also in this section. Artifacts of Palestine, Syria and Cyprus are exhibited in chronological order in the gallery of “Anatolia and Civilizations of Neighboring Countries” which is located on the upper floors beside the section of “Anatolia through Ages” and “Ages of Anatolia and Troy” where also artworks of modern ages are exhibited in different areas.

Osman Hamdi Bey Yokuşu Gülhane-Sultanahmet
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