Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Turkey: By the Beard of the Prophet!

The Topkapi Palace in Istanbul contains some truly incredible relics. Almost all of them are completely incredible.

Above is a picture of Moses' staff. Yes, that's right, the staff of Mosheh.

Never, I think, has a stick led so charmed a life, nor been so baffled by its good fortune. (If you look closely through the plate glass you can almost see it mouthing the words: "Can somebody please tell me what the hell is going on?")

Next: Abraham's saucepan (Methuselah's George Foreman Grill was undergoing maintenance work), accompanied by a turban belonging to Joseph (of Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat fame).

Perplexed as to how the Sultans had come into such riches, we endeavoured to learn more. According to a nearby plaque, they picked up most of the stash in Egypt, circa 1500. Ahhhh; that explains it.

[Overheard in an Egyptian bazaar, circa 1500]: "Yes, my friend, see this saucepan—Abraham's saucepan! And see this turban I'm wearing? Well ... do you like musicals?"


Sweet Olive Press | Helen said...


That is my full response. More, please.

Anonymous said...

I remember visiting the Topkapi Palace and wondering why there were signs everywhere saying laughter was prohibited. A few exhibits in and I understood the need for the prohibition. It could have got pretty noisy.

aubain said...

first rate stuff, as usual!

Anna said...

i never realized that Abraham was a Turk and wore a turban- that by the way 4000 years later is in perfect condition! And the joy when i saw the stick of moses in front of me (yes the same staff that parted the red sea!)

You gotta hand it to the turks! They definitely have a sense of humour...

mytiturk said...

Enjoyed your poke at the relics. Our guide told us that carbon dating isn't done "out of respect for the Prophet."
I didn't take any photos, but snuck one of the TOPKAPI Dagger, "out of respect for James Bond."

willcookson said...

Hi, great post. I hope you don't mind but I've used your pictures for a blog post on the same area - a pain that they don't allow you take take photos there - you obviously did better than I did!

let me know if you have a problem and I won't use them - I've credited you with the pics

Jules said...

No worries, Will. A crazy place, huh?