The Palace of Topkapi
The Palace of Topkapi was begun in 1465 during the reign of Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror and completed in the year 1478. It was originally called Saray-i-Cedid-Amire (New Palace) but soon became known as Topkapusu Saray. Later, the Palace became known as Topkapu Saray. New Sultans added to the Palace, the most extensive addition being made by Suleyman the Legislator.
The Palace is surrounded by the Sultaniye Sur (the Imperial Wall), approximately five kilometres in length. The main entrance is Babi-i-Humayun (the Imperial Gate) which was built by Mehmed the Conqueror. Above the doorway are a verse from the Qur'an and an Arabic inscription. Two other entrances are called Babussalam (Gate of Greeting) and Babus sa`ada (Gate of Happiness). The Imperial Gate, originally used for ceremonial occasions, is now open to the public but permission must be obtained to use the Gate of Greeting. The Palace Gardens are also open to the public.
The Palace of Topkapu is a magnificent building which, at one time, housed 40,000 men.
More about Topkapi