Hagia Sophia (from the Greek: Ἁγία Σοφία, “Holy Wisdom”)

1650 years old. Famous in particular for its massive dome, it is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture. It was the largest cathedral in the world for nearly a thousand years. It served as the cathedral of Constantinople.  In 1453, Constantinople was conquered by the Ottoman Turks and Sultan Mehmed II ordered the building to be converted into a mosque. It remained a mosque until 1935 when the newish independent Turkish state secularized it and turned it into a museum.

After visiting Hagia Sophia, we made one more stop. Very cool. The Basilica Cistern. A huge underground water storage vault. Two of the columns had Medusa heads on the bottom which were discovered during renovations.

3 thoughts on “Hagia Sophia (from the Greek: Ἁγία Σοφία, “Holy Wisdom”)

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