Interior of the Hagia Sophia

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The Hagia Sophia
1. Key Points in the History of the Hagia Sophia[edit | edit source]
  • Built during the reign of Justinian I; largest of his 25 new cathedrals. This took Justinian I five years (532 - 537) to build. *It became known as the Church of Holy Wisdom
  • When Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453, it became a mosque; today it is a museum.
2. Quick Facts[edit | edit source]

Height = 180ft
Diameter = 107ft
Dome contains 40 stained glass windows at its circumference
Six colors of marble were used biulding the walls, arches and columns
The Hagia Sophia had a pendentive, which joined the wall w/the base of the dome (and held the dome, as well)
Mosaics glittered in the daytime
Plain exterior symbolizes earthly life
Ornate interior symbolizes spiritual universe

3. Important Concepts Found in Hagia Sophia's Architecture[edit | edit source]
  • Cathedral's size, thick pillars, and enclosed space shows the Roman influence
  • Intricate and ornate design shows the Eastern influence
  • Greek and Roman cultural traditions were preserved and flourished in the Byzantine Empire, as well as in its libraries.