Turkish coffee is quite addicting, and a powerful fuel for a busy day of sightseeing, history lessons and lots of eating…. On our way to the Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace, we walked through the Hippodrome where chariot races were held 1500 hundred years ago for 40,000 spectators.  Today it is a sprawling plaza punctuated with several monoliths, including at 3500 year old Egyptian obelisk.  It was moved to Istanbul on three barges and then sat at the shore for five years until they engineers of the day figured out how to get the massive piece of granite up the hill.  What they devised was the world’s first conveyor belt to raise it. 

The defeat of Persian soldiers who were defeated by the Spartan soldiers near Troy in 480 BC is memorialized in Serpentine that was constructed  in the Temple in Delphi, Greece.  It’s blue green patina comes from the metal of the weapons of the loosing side, which were melted down and used to construct this ancient monument.