History of Istanbul

Founded as a small settlement known as Semista in about 1000B.C., Istanbul grew from a fishing village to a city called Byzantium in 657 B.C. The city was established by a Greek colonist named Byzas.

In 324 A.D. when the Roman Emperor Constantine claimed the throne he reconstructed the city of Byzantium and named it Constantinople. He made this city the capital of his kingdom, which was called the Byzantium Empire.

The Byzantium Empire however fell to the conquering Ottoman Mehmet II in 1453 and saw a flourishing period until the 19th century. Soon after in the 20th century, following the World War I, Istanbul lost its position as the capital of Turkey to Ankara. However, it continues to hold its ground today by being the business and cultural center of Turkey apart from being its largest port and city.