Hagia Sophia (from the Greek: Ἁγία Σοφία, "Holy Wisdom"; Latin: Sancta Sophia or Sancta Sapientia; Turkish: Aya Sofya) is a former Orthodox patriarchal basilica, later a mosque, and now a museum in Istanbul, Turkey. From the date of its dedication in 360 until 1453, it served as the cathedral of Constantinople, except between 1204 and 1261, when it was converted to a Roman Catholic cathedral under the Latin Patriarch of Constantinople of the Western Crusader established Latin Empire. The building was a mosque from 29 May 1453 until 1931, when it was secularized. It was opened as a museum on 1 February 1935.
The Church was dedicated to the Logos, the second person of the Holy Trinity, its dedication feast taking place on December 25, the anniversary of the incarnation of the Logos in Christ. Although it is sometimes referred to as Sancta Sophia (as though it were named after Saint Sophia), sophia is the phonetic spelling in Latin of the Greek word for wisdom - the full name in Greek being Ναός τῆς Ἁγίας τοῦ Θεοῦ Σοφίας, "Church of the Holy Wisdom of God".
Famous in particular for its massive dome, it is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture and is said to have "changed the history of architecture." It was the largest cathedral in the world for nearly a thousand years, until Seville Cathedral was completed in 1520. The current building was originally constructed as a church between 532 and 537 on the orders of the Byzantine Emperor Justinian and was the third Church of the Holy Wisdom to occupy the site, the previous two having both been destroyed by rioters. It was designed by the Greek scientists Isidore of Miletus, a physicist, and Anthemius of Tralles, a mathematician.
The church contained a large collection of holy relics and featured, among other things, a 49 foot (15 m) silver iconostasis. It was the seat of the Patriarch of Constantinople and the religious focal point of the Eastern Orthodox Church for nearly one thousand years. It is the church in which Cardinal Humbert in 1054 excommunicated Michael I Cerularius - which is commonly considered the start of the Great Schism.
In 1453, Constantinople was conquered by the Ottoman Turks under Sultan Mehmed II, who subsequently ordered the building converted into a mosque. The bells, altar, iconostasis, and sacrificial vessels were removed and many of the mosaics were plastered over. Islamic features such as the mihrab, minbar, and four minarets were added while in the possession of the Ottomans. It remained a mosque until 1931 when it was closed to the public for four years. It was re-opened in 1935 as a museum by the Republic of Turkey.
For almost 500 years the principal mosque of Istanbul, Hagia Sophia served as a model for many other Ottoman mosques, such as the Sultan Ahmed Mosque (Blue Mosque of Istanbul), the Şehzade Mosque, the Süleymaniye Mosque, the Rüstem Pasha Mosque and the Kılıç Ali Paşa Mosque
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Suppiluliuma (3841) 2011-04-04 7:43
A very nice symmetry considering the uneven arcades and columns of St Sophia, and a useful scale given by the presence of two models.
The exposure gives the details of the marble pavement...
TFS Sultan Hanım.
holmertz (26876) 2011-04-04 9:17
You have chosen a slightly different view of the Hagia Sophia from what we usually see. This is a fresh approach that I like. The huge empty room gives a strong impression and the light falls very nicely on the large stone floor with all its cracks. I also like the well captured texture of the slightly faded ceiling.
stny (18) 2011-04-04 11:03
İstanbulda en zor fotograf çekilen mekanlardan biri sanırım Ayasofya.Böylesi mükemmel çekim için ustalık gerek.Simetrisiyle, ışığı kullanımıyla, renklerin doğallığı ve insan unsuru ile göz alıcı, dört dörtlük bir çalışma.İçindeymişim gibi geldi.Elinize sağlık.Kutlarım.
CLODO (24688) 2011-04-04 11:21
You're back, that's a good news! I like the way you framed to incorporate the ceiling with ots paintings, and the 2 tourists give yhe scale of this huge church. The floor have seen many persons walking on it if we look at its aspect.
- Copyright: sultan aslan (sultana) (2101)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2011-03-19
- Categories: Architecture
- Camera: D700, NIKON 14-24 mm 2.8
- Exposure: f/5.6, 1/125 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2011-04-04 7:22