May 29, 2012

The Roman Chain of the Golden Horn

The Romans had this chain stretched across the mouth of the Golden Horn to keep out the navy of Mehmed II in 1453 during the siege of Constantinople. Each link is about 2 feet long and they were only broken once, during the Fourth Crusade in 1204. Desiring to get his fleet into the Golden Horn from the Bosphorus and prevented by these chains, Mehmed ordered that several ships be rolled on land across Galata on greased logs two days later. Moving around the Genoese colony of Pera, the ships were able to be refloated in the Golden Horn behind the chain. They are currently on display in the Istanbul Military Museum, as well as other parts in the city.