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Valens Aqueduct Istanbul

Valens Aqueduct Istanbul

Location

The Valens Aqueduct stands in Istanbul’s Fatih quarter and spans the valley between the hills of Istanbul University and the Fatih Mosque.

Dimensions

It is believed the Aqueduct had a length exceeding 1,000m during the early Byzantine period but today has an average length of 971m and a maximum height of about 28m (63.5m above sea level). A large part of the Aqueduct was destroyed with and its surviving parts are now located on Ataturk Boulevard.

History of Valens Aqueduct

The actual construction date of the Aqueduct is uncertain but it was created
 in the late Roman and the early Byzantine eras and certain sources state it was completed either during the reign of Emperor Valens (364–378) or Hadrianus (117–138) whose names it bears.  Repairs have been carried out during the rule of Emperor Justinian II (576), Konstantinos V (741–775) and Basileios II (1019) and it sustained a large amount of damage during the siege and invasion of the city. During the 6th century the Aqueduct was used to provide water to the palaces of Istanbul, the Ahilleus Bath and the Cistern and according to Ruy Gonzáles de Clavijo, a Castilian diplomat who travelled to Istanbul en-route to an embassy in 1403, it was also used to water gardens.  

After the conquest of Istanbul in 1453 Sultan Mehmet II ( Mehmet the Conqueror ) repaired the whole water supply, adding new arches to the structure in an attempt to solve the water shortage problem of the city and during the Ottoman era it underwent repairs several times and all of which made a great impact on the ability of the Aqueduct to this present day.

H. Prost, who prepared the structural plan of Istanbul, enabled vehicles to proceed through the Aqueduct without causing any damage during World War II and the part on Ataturk Boulevard was cleaned and strengthened by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality in 1988 with further restoration on this historical structure carried out between 1990 and 1993 by Doğan Kuban and Ş. Akıncı.
 

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