For almost a millennium after its construction, it was the largest cathedral in all of Christendom. Pres. Like. Bringing the structure in line with the Islamic tradition called for a series of other modifications, not all of which were undertaken during the reign of Mehmed II. In 1985 the Hagia Sophia was designated a component of a UNESCO World Heritage site called the Historic Areas of Istanbul, which includes that city’s other major historic buildings and locations. It served as a center of religious, political, and artistic life for the Byzantine world and has provided us with many useful scholarly insights into the period. It would remain a mosque until being converted into a museum in the 1930s. Much of the Hagia Sophia’s edifice evident today was completed in the 6th century (primarily from 532–537), during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian I. His son, Constantius II, consecrated it in 360. Hagia Sophia, Turkish Ayasofya, Latin Sancta Sophia, also called Church of the Holy Wisdom or Church of the Divine Wisdom, an important Byzantine structure in Istanbul and one of the world’s great monuments. Later modifications included the construction of more minarets, the whitewashing of Christian mosaics, and the addition of structural supports. As Turkey’s most popular tourist destination, the Hagia Sophia remained open to visitors. In a very brief, improvised remark, Pope Francis, speaking from his studio window overlooking St. Peter's Square, said he is “deeply pained” over the decision by Turkey to change the status of Hagia Sophia, which had originally been built as a Christian cathedral, from that of a museum in Istanbul to a mosque. Saint Sophia should be returned to Christians,” the parliamentarian said. The original wooden minaret did not survive. It was built as a Christian church in the 6th century ce (532–537) under the direction of the Byzantine emperor Justinian I. The move came hours after Turkey's highest court issued a landmark ruling that unanimously annulled the 1934 cabinet decision to renovate the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul into a museum. 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"Museum or Mosque? After a lapse of half a century, Islamic religious services are to be held once more in the former Byzantine cathedral of St Sophia in Istanbul. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Hagia Sophia (Άγια Σοφία in Greek), the Church of Holy Wisdom, known variously as Sancta Sophia in Latin or Ayasofya in Turkish, is an ancient cathedral of the Church of Constantinople located in modern-day Istanbul, Turkey. For a … It was converted to a mosque by the Turks and is now used as a museum. During Mehmed’s rule, a wooden minaret (no longer standing), a mihrab (niche positioned in the direction of Mecca), a minbar (pulpit), a madrasah (school), and a grand chandelier were added. It was converted into a museum a year later, a decision which remains controversial. The church was burned again in the Nika insurrection of January 532, a circumstance that gave Justinian I an opportunity to envision a splendid replacement. Hagia Sophia is an UNESCO World Heritage Site and the former cathedral of Holy Wisdom in Istanbul. From the date of its construction in 537 AD, and until 1453, it. According to the Chronicon Paschale, the church was consecrated on 15 February 360, during the reign of the emperor Constantius II (r. 337–361), by the Arian bishop Eudoxius of Antioch, it was built next to the area where the Great Palace was being developed. Get exclusive access to content from our 1768 First Edition with your subscription. The Hagia Sophia rising along the shore of the Bosporus, Istanbul. The two identical minarets on the western side were likely commissioned by Selim II or Murad III and built by renowned Ottoman architect Sinan in the 1500s. The Turkish secular government in 1934 decided to make it a museum. Since then, mosaics were added throughout the Byzantine period, structural modifications were made in both the Byzantine and Ottoman periods, and features important to the Islamic architectural tradition were constructed during Ottoman ownership of the structure. It would remain so for many centuries, until being secularized in 1934 by the Turkish Republic’s first president. Either he or his son Bayezid II erected the red minaret that stands on the southeast corner of the structure. It was rebuilt and enlarged by the Roman emperor Constans I. It went through another religious conversion after the conquest of Constantinople by Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II in 1453, when it was designated a mosque. It was restored again in the mid-14th century. 5. For more than a millennium it was the Cathedral of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. The Hagia Sophia was built in the remarkably short time of about six years, being completed in 537 ce. The original church to occupy the site (called the Megale Ekklesia) was commissioned by Emperor Constantine I in 325, razed during a riot in 404, later rebuilt, and destroyed once again in 532 before Justinian commissioned the building that exists today. Prior to that, the site had been home to a pagan temple. The name Hagia Sophia didn’t come about until around 430 CE. Saint Sophia is the finest and most famous example of BYZANTINE architecture in the world. And it is said that Glee recently left for Heaven. The Hagia Sophia is part of the UNESCO World Heritage site in Istanbul. Hagia Sophia, Turkish Ayasofya, Latin Sancta Sophia, also called Church of the Holy Wisdom or Church of the Divine Wisdom, an important Byzantine structure in Istanbul and one of the world’s great monuments. The first of the three Christian structures to be built on the site had another name altogether: Megale Ekklesia, or “Great Church.”. Report on Work Carried out in 1964", "Documentary Evidence on the Apse Mosaics of St. Sophia", "Hagia Sophia, Constantinople: Religious images and their functional context after iconoclasm", "Interpreting the Mosaics of S. Sophia at Istanbul", "Images of the Mother: When the Virgin Mary Became "Meter Theou, "Some Remarks on the Apse Mosaic of St. Sophia", "The Representation of Virgin and Child on a "Thokos" on Seals of the Constantinopolitan Patriarchs (pl. Immediately after that, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said he signed a decree on turning the cathedral into a mosque and starting Muslim worship services there. The colossal Santa Sophia cathedral was turned into a mosque after the Ottomans conquered the city in 1453. On July 10, the Supreme Administrative Court of Turkey annulled a 1934 decision to turn the St. Sophia Cathedral into a museum. For the past eighty years Hagia Sophia has been a museum. St. sophia cathedral , istanbul, turkey Premium Photo 10 months ago. The colossal Santa Sophia cathedral, an iconic structure that now attracts visitors from the world over, was turned from a place of Christian worship … The original church on the site of the Hagia Sophia is said to have been ordered to be built by Constantine I in 325 on the foundations of a pagan temple. Hagia Sophia is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Istanbul, Turkey. St. Sophia was itself the second church of that name, built after the first one was destroyed by another mob in 404. Collect. The colossal Santa Sophia cathedral was turned into a mosque after the Ottomans conquered the city in 1453. Even now it’s known by several different monikers: Ayasofya in Turkish, Sancta Sophia in Latin, and Holy Wisdom or Divine Wisdom in English (alternate English translations of the Greek words Hagia Sophia). It currently functions as a mosque. It is located in heart of old Istanbul, next to the Blue Mosque in the Sultan Ahmet Square (Sultanahmet Meydani) Istanbul. OXFORD, England (CNS) — Catholic bishops in Turkey pledged not to contest plans to turn Istanbul’s ancient Hagia Sophia cathedral that now serves as a museum into a Muslim place of worship. Omissions? But Emperor Justinian had a plan to restore the empire to its greatness. Mosaic from Hagia Sophia, 9th century. In subsequent centuries it became a mosque, a museum, and a mosque again. In 1935, Hagia Sophia acquired the status of museum. It was built as a Christian church in the 6th century ce (532–537) under the direction of the Byzantine emperor Justinian I. 54-61)", "The Medieval Russian Account of the Fourth Crusade – A New Annotated Translation", Age of spirituality: late antique and early Christian art, third to seventh century, "History of Hagia Sophia - the Church of Holy Wisdom", "A Monumental Struggle to Preserve Hagia Sophia", 360 Degree Virtual Tour of Hagia Sophia Mosque Museum, Gigapixel of Hagia Sophia Dome ( 214 Billion Pixel ), Hagia Sophia Museum, Republic of Turkey, Ministry of Culture & Tourism, The Most Visited Museums of Turkey: Hagia Sophia Museum, Governorship of Istanbul, Hagia Sophia Mosque, Istanbul Directorate of Culture & Tourism, Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar Literature Museum Library, Holy Martyrs Menodora, Metrodora, and Nymphodora, Spain (Iberian Peninsula and Balearic Islands), Kefeli (Monastery of Manuel / St. Nicholas), Koca Mustafa Pasha (St. Andrew in Krisei), Little Haghia Sophia (SS. Hagia Sophia. Download this Premium Photo about St. sophia cathedral , istanbul, turkey, and discover more than 7 Million Professional Stock Photos on Freepik Pope Francis says he is “deeply pained” over the decision by Turkey to change the status of Istanbul's Hagia Sophia — built as a Christian cathedral — from a museum to a mosque. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. Muslims attend Friday prayers outside Hagia Sophia Grand Mosque in Istanbul July 24. Dome, showing pendentive construction; Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, 6th century. Pope Francis says he is 'deeply pained' over Turkey's decision on Hagia Sophia The Hagia Sophia was built in Istanbul as a Christian cathedral before it became a museum in 1934 Istanbul, Turkey - Buy this stock photo and explore similar images at Adobe Stock View of St. Sophia Cathedral (Mosque, Hagia Sofia) in January on a cloudy day. In 1934 Turkish Pres. The picture above shows the actual view of ST.SOPHIA CHURCH MUSEUM (Ayasofya Muzesi) in Istanbul today. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. ", This page was last edited on 10 December 2020, at 13:45. The Turkish secular government in 1934 decided to make it a museum. It was founded in 537 under the Emperor Justinian. The building reflects the religious changes that have played out in the region over the centuries, with the minarets and inscriptions of Islam as well as the lavish mosaics of Christianity. The Virgin Mary and Child between Justinian I (left), holding a model of Hagia Sophia, and Constantine (right), holding a model of the city of Constantinople. The ancient cathedral of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul – the former seat of eastern Christianity – could now be dedicated to use as a mosque after Turkey’s high court on Friday ruled its conversion into a museum in 1934 was unlawful. St Sophia Cathedral was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List among theother monuments of Istanbul’s historic center in … Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced the decision after a court annulled the site's museum status. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/topic/Hagia-Sophia, History Learning Site - The Balfour Declaration of 1917, The Met - Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History - Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, Turkey, LiveScience - Hagia Sophia: Facts, History and Architecture, Republic of Turkey Ministry of Culture and Tourism - Hagia Sophia Museum, Hagia Sophia - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Hagia Sophia - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up), Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. Outside Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, 6th century ce ( 532–537 ) under the direction of the Patriarchate! Boats in bosphorus, Istanbul, 6th century ce ( 532–537 ) under the direction the. 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