Rotunda of St. George.
It is now the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George (Agios Georgios), better known as the Church of the Rotunda (or simply The Rotunda). The cylindrical structure was built in 306 on the orders of the tetrarch Galerius, who was thought to have intended it to be his mausoleum. It was more likely intended as a temple; it is not known to what god it would have been dedicated.
The Rotunda has a diameter of 24.5 m. Its walls are more than 6 m thick, which is one reason why it has withstood Thessaloniki's earthquakes. The walls are interrupted by eight rectangular bays, with the south bay forming the entrance. A flat brick dome, 30 m high at the peak, crowns the cylindrical structure. In its original design, the dome of the Rotunda had an oculus like the Pantheon in Rome.
After Galerius's death in 311, he was buried at Gamzigrad (Felix Romuliana) near Zajecar, Serbia); however, the structure stood empty until the Emperor Constantine I ordered it converted into a Christian church in the 4th century. The church was embellished with very high artistic quality mosaics. Only fragments survived of the original decoration, for example a band depicting saints with hands raised in prayer, in front of complex architectural phantasies.
The building functioned as a church for over 1,200 years until the city fell to the Ottomans. In 1590 it was then converted into a mosque, the Mosque of Suleyman Hortaji Effendi, and a minaret was added to the structure. It remained a mosque until 1912, when the Greeks captured the city during the Balkan War. It was then formally re-consecrated into a church, but the minaret was not demolished. The structure was damaged during an earthquake in 1978 but was subsequently restored. As of 2004[update], the minaret was still being stabilized with scaffolding. The building is now a historical monument under the Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities of the Greek Ministry of Culture though the Greek Orthodox Church tries to reclaim it back for Orthodoxy every so often.The Rotunda is the oldest of Thessaloniki's churches, and some publications in Greece claim that it is the oldest Christian church in the world, although there are a number of other claimants to that title. It is certainly the most important surviving example of a church from the early Christian period of the Greek-speaking part of the Roman Empire...wikipedia
* see my Here WS another shot!
Critiques | Translate
maximage (15535) 2009-11-23 10:26
Impressionnante construction que cette église orthodoxe!
Note très intéressante.
Amitiés et bonne soirée.
mikolaj_kawa (0) 2009-11-23 10:58
Hello Georgios! Wonderful rotunda, amazing tower, very interesting architecture, nice sky, very nice light and colours, good POV and composition. Perfect sharpness. Well done!
lousat (79984) 2009-11-23 16:31
Hi Geo,the choice of point of view was decisive for the beauty of this pic.Very nice and intelligent composition whit a top quality of sharpness and colors.My best compliments,have a nice day,LUCIANO
ChrisJ (101919) 2009-11-23 19:17
Good sharpness, and well framed & composed. A wonderful blue sky with excellent warm cold colour contrasts. Tfs!
mauro61 (52631) 2009-11-24 0:43
Architettura circolare che si staglia contro il cielo azzurro con una buona definizione.
Un po' scuro il FG .
Budapestman (82620) 2009-11-24 2:10
a superb shot of this imposing church with spectacular composition, the colours and lights are excellent, an interesting and beautiful architectural photo, Tfs! Have a nice day!
snunney (87436) 2009-11-24 2:49
A fine composition of this massive and unusual church. The detail in the brickwork is very well rendered under a good light. Good tonal contrasts.
mursaloglu (8682) 2009-11-24 4:29
I like the texture and sidelightning here and a very good shot POV. great details bravo ihsan
jhm (142085) 2009-11-24 4:35
You shows here very nice, the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George.
The cylindrical structure is extraordinarily lovely for look at, great archichitecture out of the time of then.
The colours and lights are very nice, good captured and composed.
Very well done, TFS.
rikko77 (10861) 2009-11-24 8:17
good contrast between the shadows in the FG and the light background under a blue blue sky. It's a good job and your note is interesting as well.
Have a nice day
Cretense (68691) 2009-11-25 0:41
Γεια σου Γεώργιε!
Αψογη καταγραφή της περίφημης Ροτόντας, πολύ καλό κάδρο και σύνθεση, εντυπωσιακός φωτισμός! Υπέροχα χρώματα και "καθαρότητα"! Συγχαρητήρια!
pablominto (53744) 2009-11-27 23:07
A most original church architecture, with strong features from fortress construction!
And back in 300s there might have been a double purpose...
I'm impressed to see a structure this old still standing so well!
Angshu (56406) 2009-11-29 20:04
It was fascinating reading your note...difficult to think first hand that this is a church. Well framed with the silhouetted trees in the FG and the blue sky offers good contrast with the stone colours. I liked your WS post with fine framing with the tree branches as well!
- Copyright: Georgios Topas (TopGeo) (38206)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2009-10-31
- Categories: Daily Life, Nature, Transportation, Architecture
- Camera: Canon EOS450D, Canon 18-55 mm EF-S
- Exposure: f/8, 1/500 seconds
- Details: Tripod: Yes
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
- Theme(s): Thessaloniki city [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2009-11-23 9:49
- Favorites: 1 [view]