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Bascarsija and Sebilj Fountain
Bascarsija and Sebilj Fountain
Bascarsija (tur. – the main market) was established in the 15th century by Isa-Bey Ishakovic, the founder of Sarajevo, and Ghazi Husrev-Bey who left an exquisite endowment as a legacy to the city.
Location: Old Town
In addition to these two benefactors, some other regents and wealthy merchants contributed with their donations.
With rise of the Empire, the city progresses as well. Thus, Bascarsija was finished by the end of the 16th century, and the city soon after witnessed its golden age. Along with Istanbul, Thessaloniki, Edirne and Athens, it became one of the 5 largest cities in the Balkans, the city of trading and wealthy and powerful community.
The square spread into several trading and craftsmen alleys, it comprised 45 markets and over 80 crafts. Tiny cobbled alleys intertwined and spread towards mosques, inns, bedestans, hamams, schools and tekkes, fountains, caravanserai…  

The first water supply system was built in the mid 15th century, and significantly extended in the 16th century. By the end of the Ottoman period, there were 156 spouts and several stone fountains built mainly as an endowment.

Sebilj Fountain is a symbol of Sarajevo. A legend says: "Whoever drinks water from any of Sarajevo’s fountains and spouts will come to Sarajevo”. The Sebilj Fountain was built in 1753.

It is central spot of the Bascarsija Square, which spreads into several trading and craftsmen alleys named after a particular craft hood. Looking from above, the Bascarsija Square is surrounded by residential communities with beautiful authentic houses and tiny gardens, as well as the business and cultural centre. Thus, Bascarsija, stands there as an open antique amphitheater with old alleys, quarters and houses scattered around.

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