Friday, 17 April 2009

Monuments : ANITKABIR


Anıtkabir (literally, "memorial tomb") is the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the leader of Turkish War of Independence and the founder and first president of the Republic of Turkey. It is located in Ankara and was designed by architects Professor Emin Onat and Assistant Professor Orhan Arda, who won the competition held by the Turkish Government in 1941 for a "monumental mausoleum" for Atatürk out of a total of 49 international proposals.
The site is also the final resting place of İsmet İnönü, the second President of Turkey, who was interred there after he died in 1973. His tomb faces the Atatürk Mausoleum, on the opposite side of the Ceremonial Ground.


On 10 November 2007, 69th anniversary of Atatürk's death, 546,620 people, of whom 544,200 were Turkish nationals and 2,420 were foreigners, visited Anıtkabir setting an all time high record of daily visitors. In the first 11 months of 2007, Anıtkabir received over 11 million visitors, surpassing the total number of visitors for any whole year. In 2006, a total of 8,150,000 people and in 2005, a total of 3,800,000 people visited Anıtkabir.


There are four main parts to Anıtkabir: the Street of Lions, the Ceremonial Plaza, the Hall of Honor (location of Atatürk's tomb) and the Peace Park that surrounds the monument.

Street of Lions
The approach to the monument is a 262-meter-long pedestrian walkway that is lined on both sides by twelve pairs of lions carved in a style like the Hittite archaeological finds. The lions represent Anatolia and are shown seated to simultaneously represent both power and peace. A five centimeter gap separates the paving stones on the Street of Lions to ensure that visitors take their time and observe respectful behavior on their way to Atatürk's tomb.

Ceremonial Plaza
The Ceremonial Plaza is situated at the end of the Lions Road. The area is 129 m. long and 84 m. wide and was designed to accommodate 15,000 people. The floor is decorated with 373 rug and kilim (Turkish carpet) patterns, and is made of travertine in various colors.

Hall of Honor
The Hall of Honor is the iconic symbol of Anıtkabir and the location of Atatürk's tomb. The structure is 41.65 x 57.35 m. in plan and rises to a height of 17 m, with the columns themselves measuring 14.4 meters.
Atatürk's tomb is situated right under the symbolic 40-ton sarcophagus in the ground floor of The Hall of Honor, and Atatürk's corpse is buried below this in a special Tomb Room in the basement level. The room has an octagonal plan in Seljuk and Ottoman architectural styles, and its pyramidal ceiling is inlaid with gold mosaics.

Peace Park
The park that surrounds the monument is called a Peace Park in honor of Atatürk's famous expression "Peace at home, peace in the world." It contains around 50,000 decorative trees, flowers and shrubs in 104 varieties, donated from around 25 countries.

Towers, statues, museum
Within the Anitkabir site there are ten towers situated in a symmetrical arrangement. These symbolize the ideals that influenced the Turkish nation and the creation of the Republic of Turkey. The towers are similar in terms of planning and structure: they are rectangular, close to a square, with pyramidal roofs. Bronze arrowheads are placed on the top of the roofs, like in traditional Turkish nomad tents. Inside the towers, geometric ornamentation inspired by traditional Turkish carpet (kilim) patterns and motifs, can be found on the towers' ceilings in fresco technique. There are also inscriptions of quotes by Atatürk that correspond to the theme of that tower.

Towers:
Independence,Freedom, Mehmetçik,Victory, Peace, 23rd April,National Pact and Reforms



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