Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Building: Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia is important to both the Byzantine and the Ottoman Empires
this structure is one with a unique history and architectural wonder.

Situated in Istanbul, Turkey, the city itself has hosted many civilizations since the beginning of its time.  It is believed to be one (if not) the first Christian church back when Christianity was declared legal by Constantine.  Hagia Sophia was commissioned by Justinian during the Byzantine era, replacing the old church after a huge riot broke out and destroyed most of the city.  

When the Ottoman Empire took over Istanbul, Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque.  The design was quite popular and used as the model for all mosques built in Turkey.  Looking at it today, you see both influences of Christianity and Islam in Hagia Sophia.  Nowadays, it sits as a museum.  But the structural soundness of this Byzantine church could be it demise if the Turkish
government doesn't provide the funds to fix it. 

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