“..The line of walls and enormous towers extends as far as the eye can see, …varied by infinite forms of ruin, tinted with many deep and sombre colors, from black to warm, almost golden yellow, and clothed by redundant vegetation of dark green, that climbs about the wall, falling in garlands from the battlemets and loop-holes, rising in rich masses and pyramids of verdure, hanging in draperies, rushing in cascades, filling every crack and fissure, and advancing even into the road”

(E. De Amicis, Constantinople, 1874)