“Venice and Istanbul: the client, and the source. For centuries, the two cities were locked together in trade and war, jockeying for advantage in the eastern Mediterranean. Istanbul had many faces but one, like Venice’s, was turned to the sea. Like Venice, too, the greatest thoroughfares of Istanbul were waterways; people were forever passing from the city to Uskudar, from Uskudar to Pera, and from Pera to the city again, across the Golden Horn. The famous gondolas of Venice were no more central to life in the lagoon than caiques to the people of Istanbul, and while the Venetian gondola had its champions, most people would have agreed that the caique was superior in point of elegance and speed. Even after dark, the caiques swarmed around the landing stages like water beetles.