Kiamil Bey’s palace (seraglio)

The area where once Kiamil Bey's palace was constructed as shown in Google earth map.


The Palace of Kiamil Bey was constructed during the course of 18th c., at a large enclosure across one of the northern promontories of the lower terrace of Corinth, with harems, baths, kiosks and gardens, exhibiting its oriental feature. Today nothing has surveyed from the once impressive large palace, apart from a damaged hammam, the remaining masonry from a tower, and the monumental stone stairway at the site «Loutra Aphrodite (Λουτρά Αφροδίτης, Baths of Venus)».

Leake passed by Corinth in 1802 ("Travels in the Morea" III), and recorded the wealth family of Kiamil Bey, who had vast properties in the region and elsewhere in the Peloponnese "... the most remarkable object of Corinth, the palace of Nuri Bey standing in a large enclosure near the middle of the cliff ". 

Ed. Dodwell during his visit to the area by the beginning of the 19th c. (1805-6) wrote: ".... Corinth is governed by a bey, whose command extends over 163 villages … The bey resides in a large house at the north-east extremity of the town; his garden is ornamented with decapitated cypress trees, which circumstance contradicts the authority of Theophrastus and Pliny, who assert that the cypress dies if its top is cut off.”

The city plan of Ancient Corinth, where Kiamil Bey’s palace is traced.
(Guy D. R. Sanders, Η Κόρινθος κατά τις δεκαετίες αμέσως πριν το σεισμό του 1858 υπό το φως της αρχαιολογικής έρευνας και ανασκαφών από το 1959 μέχρι σήμερα.)

























Fr. Pouqueville in his "Voyage de la Grece", v. 4, 1826-27, mentioned that "...Kyamil bey, an indigenous Mohamedian could serve as a model for a painting of Apollo. Under the government of Kiamil bey, whose family is in charge of Corinthia for a century, this place has been more prosperous than any other in Greece. A ruined caravanseraik (inn) is the only lodging open to foreigners".

J. Woods quoted about it (1828): "The best house I have seen is that of the bey of Corinth; the principal part of the building is in the form of the letter L, forming two sides of a square and in the corner is a flight of steps leading to the gallery and the principal floor. This gallery is never omitted in any decent house; it is always of wood, and the principal rooms open immediately into it. Our verandas seem to be imitated from it, but its greater depth, and projecting roof, with deeply ornamented eaves, render it much superior in effect. The entrance into this palace, like that of other houses, is by a court, but externally, the walls rise immediately on the summit of a steep, rocky bank, below which are the gardens, and it thus commands a view of the plain and gulf of Corinth, and the situation is very good both for seeing and being seen; though the almost naked plain of Corinth does not form a very fine foreground. Underneath the gallery, in the court, is a range of arches, which in England you might call Saxon, supported on short, round pillars, which do not correspond with the posts of the gallery above. The walls of this gallery have been ornamentally painted, but the painting and ornaments are almost gone. Beyond the part now described is a range of offices, and beyond these the women's apartments, which are of course invisible."

Eleni I. Kanetaki

Kachros fountain (remains) Kiamil Bey’s palace monumental stairway
Williams H.W. (drawn by Williams, engraved by Miller, W.) Corinth. Acrocorinthus of Corinth, from Williams' Hugh William, Select views in Greece with classical illustrations, 9,9x14,20 engraving, London, 1829.Stackelberg, O.M. von (Lithog. par Dupressoir), Ville de Corinthe, prise du port Lèuchèum (The city of Corinth from the port of Lechaio), from Otto Magnus von Stackelberg La Grèce. Vues pittoresques et topographiques dessinées par O.M. Baron de Stackelberg, Black & white lithograph, Paris 1834.

Pouqueville, Fr.-Ch.-H.-L., Corinth and Acrocorinth (Corinthe), Grèce, Paris, 1835.

Bauer, F., View of Corinth and Acrocorinth, The Nds. Staats und Universitätsbibliothek, oil on canvas, Göttingen
Gell, W., Corinth. Acrocorinth and the palace of the Bey, seen from the North, London, British Museum, Sir William Gell collection, Greek and Roman Department, Gell Notebook 3, p. 9, pencil sketch.
Detail cut from Gell, W., Corinth. Acrocorinth and the palace of the Bey, seen from the North.Gell, W., Nouri Bey's Palace in Corinth, British Museum, Sir William Gell collection, Sketch, 1810.H. von Hallerstein, C., Palast des Nouri Bey in Korinth, Freiherr von Lallersche Familienstiftung, Korinth 1607, 19,70x31 pencil drawing.


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