Carted off from Delphi’s Temple of Apollo in the 4th Century A.D., this spiral column sits tucked between the two obelisks. It was originally commissioned by the 31 Greek city-states that worked together to defeat the Persians at Plataea in 479 B.C. The twisting coils are meant to be the bodies of snakes. The structure once ended in three serpent heads that held a golden trophy. The bottom of the column shows the original level of the Hippodrome. By the way, another ancient Greek statue that once graced Istanbul’s Hippodrome was that of the four horses that now perch on top of St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice. (Actually, the originals are in the Basilica’s museum, having been replaced by reproductions in the 1970s.)

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