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Maiden's Tower ( Kız Kulesi )
The architectural structure of the Maiden's Tower (Kız Kulesi) dates back to 341 BC. This cape which was an extension of the Bosphorous straits at the time (there are rumours that it was a peninsula before) used to be called "vus". At this date after being a mausoleum built on marble columns for the wife of Commander Chares a chain was pulled from its location at Sarayburnu to the island where the tower was located in 410 BC to make it a customs area controlling the entries and exits of the Bosphorous strait. At 1110 AD the first apparent structure (tower) was built by the Emperor Manuel Comnenos. This structure which was built as a defence tower was named Arcla meaning "Small Tower". Although there is no clear information about this structure it is believed to be close to its current dimensions. The tower which was used for defence purposes during the conquest of İstanbul was used for very different purposes after 1453. During the Ottoman period it was used rather as a show platform than a defence team and the Mehteran team cited the nevbet (a national anthem) accompanied by the canons placed on the island. The structure which was damaged during the earthquake of 1509 was rebuilt later. Furthermore it acted as a lighthouse with the lights that were added. The structure that was built then included a tower and a castle and a cistern was built in it. The tower that burnt down with the fire from the light in 1719 was repaired again in 1725 by the Head Architect of the city Nevşehirli Damat İbrahim Paşa. The tower section was changed a little and a glass chalet was added to the top and a lead dome was placed on it and the building was built with wood. It was converted into a quarantine hospital in order for the cholera epidemic not to spread to the city in 1830. It was started to be used as a defence castle again with the decline of the Ottoman Empire and it is equipped with canons. The epigraph bearing the signature of Sultan Mahmut the Second was placed on the marble above the gate with the handwriting of the famous calligrapher Rakim. In 1857 a light is added again and in 1920 an automatic system is introduced as the light of the lighthouse. It is thought of transferring this building to private sector as of 1992 and several institutions such as the İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality Üsküdar Municipality Chamber of Architects Şairler Turing Ulusoy Group of Companies etc. develop various mediatic projects...
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