Hagia Sophia: A remarkable work of Byzantine architecture

The city of Istanbul in Turkey is divided into two continents, Asia and Europe. The Bosphorus, which connects the two continents, divides the city. In the European part of this city there is a giant architectural wonder. The name of this architectural work made during the Byzantine rule is 'Hagia Sophia'. It is said that the Byzantine architectural marvel of unique beauty and features has changed the history of Hagia Sophia architecture. He has added another dimension to history. This architectural relationship aroused the author's interest in reading American novelist Dan Brown's book Inferno. So, with gratitude to that book and the author of the book, I am starting to describe various known and unknown things about Hagia Sophia.

Hagia Sophia was built about 1,500 years ago today as a Byzantine Christian basilica. But much like the Eiffel Tower in Paris or the Parthenon in Athens, it is now considered a secular architectural style. Of course, it is not only because of its architectural style that it is famous, but also because of its historical, religious, and artistic appeal.

Built near the Bosphorus Strait in the old part of Turkey, the structure is an object of dignity to people of both traditional Christian and Muslim faiths. Because, this installation is the bearer of many years of tradition and history of Turkey. Its identity and use have changed at different times with the passage of history. It was built as a place of worship for Byzantine Christians. In the evolution of time, it has been used as the cathedral of the Greek orthodox Christians, the cathedral of the Roman Catholics and the mosque of the Muslims. However, it is now open as a museum for people of all faiths. Since Hagia Sophia has been used as a place of worship for Christians and Muslims at different times, the coexistence of various aspects of the religion of Christians and Muslims can be seen in this installation. The thoughts and ideas of the people of these two different religions came together as one in Hagia Sophia.

History of the construction of Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia's Turkish name is 'Isophia'. It is also called the ‘Church of Holy Wisdom’ or the ‘Church of Heavenly Wisdom’. The Byzantine emperor Constantius first ordered the construction of the Hagia Sophia as a Byzantine basilica in 360 AD. At that time the city of Istanbul was called Constantinople. The city was named after Constantine's father, the first emperor of the Byzantine Empire, Constantine I.

The first Hagia Sophia roof was made of wood. Due to the political quarrel of the royal family, the roof was burnt to ashes in 404 AD. Then in 415 Hagia Sophia was rebuilt by Emperor Theodosius. This second Hagia Sophia had five main parts, there was a huge entrance and like the first its roof was made of wood. Hagia Sophia, built for the second time, survived for more than a century. The second also had a fire on its forehead. In the service Hagia Sophia was burned in the fire of the subjects' revolt against the emperor Justinian I.

Burj Khalifa - Unknown history of the construction of the tallest building in the world. 

The White House : Unknown facts

Hagia Sophia, who was burnt to ashes for the second time, was also unrepairable. So in 532, Emperor Justinian ordered a new church to be built by two of the most famous architects of the time, Isidoros and Anthimius. The construction of this unique and ordinary Hagia Sophia, completed for the third time, was completed in 537 AD, which still stands proudly today.

Design of Hagia Sophia

Ever since the third and final edition of the Hagia Sophia was released to the public, this style of architecture has continued to amaze the public. Byzantine architects have given birth to a remarkable architecture, in keeping with the traditional structure of the traditional Christian church. Upon entering Hagia Sophia, visitors are bound to be mesmerized by its vastness and aesthetics. The main chamber of the Hagia Sophia is so large that even the largest cathedrals in Europe seem dwarfed by it. Of course, this house is not as big as it seems. The design of the Byzantine floor plan is such that it creates a kind of illusion in the eyes of the visitors.

The huge golden dome on the roof of the Hagia Sophia is located at least one hundred and fifty feet above the floor. Seen from the front, it looks much higher. Due to its golden color, this huge roof dome is often called the 'Golden Dome'. Forty ribs from the center of the dome are scattered around as if the sun's rays are scattered around the sun. The forty ribs that spread from the dome ended with forty arched windows. When light enters through these windows during the day, the glass and gold tiles inside radiate a radiance that astonishes visitors. This radiance is known as Hajia Sophia's 'spiritual light'. There are also some dazzling chandeliers hanging inside the Hagia Sophia by wire from the roof of the dome. The interior of this architecture sparkles in their light.

The huge shape in which Hagia Sophia is built is said to have two purposes. The first purpose is to highlight the magnitude of human prayer to the Creator. And the second purpose is to amaze the worshipers, so that they may realize their own smallness after entering here. All the ego becomes attached to the Creator with water.

Conversion from church to mosque

The Byzantines followed the traditional religion of the Greeks, and Hagia Sophia was their main shrine. This is where the Byzantine emperors took their oaths, wearing the first crown. The new emperors used to wear crowns on their heads while standing on the main part of the church where the square marble floor of Hagia Sophia has colorful spiral designs. Hagia Sophia has been used as the centerpiece of this Byzantine Empire tradition for more than 900 years.

Small country in the world 

During the Crusades organized between Muslims and Christians in the thirteenth century, Hagia Sophia was occupied by the Romans for some time. At that time it was used as a Roman Catholic cathedral for some time. By the time the Byzantines regained control of the architecture, it had been severely damaged. So the Byzantine rulers repaired and restored the old beauty of their Sadh temples.

In the middle of the fifteenth century, the Ottoman Emperor Fatih Sultan Mehmed captured Constantinople. The Ottomans renamed Constantinople Istanbul. At that time, Hagia Sophia, the main synagogue of the Byzantines, was again in trouble.

When Ottoman rule over Istanbul was established, they considered converting Hagia Sophia into a mosque. They replaced many of the Christian patterns inside Hagia Sophia. The Christian symbols on the walls and floors of this architecture were covered by the Ottomans with Islamic inscriptions. According to the tradition of the mosque, a mihrab is placed on the west wall of the Hagia Sophia. Two bronze lamps are placed on either side of the mihrab. Surrounding this architecture are four minarets, from which the sound of the call to prayer spreads all around. Over time, many such things have changed and the Hagia Sophia has been used as a place of worship for Muslims.

The current Hagia Sophia

Even today, more than a hundred years after the fall of the Ottoman Empire, Hagia Sophia continues to play an important role in politics and religion. In 1935, nine years after the founding of the Republic of Turkey by Kamal Atatুrk, Hagia Sophia was transformed into a museum. After being converted into a museum, various Christian symbols and images from the Byzantine period were restored in Hagia Sophia. At present, various symbols and sayings of the religion of Christians and Muslims can be seen side by side in Hagia Sophia. The wonder of two completely different religions coexists in the museum.

More than three million visitors flock to Istanbul every year to see this time-honored installation in Turkey. Even today, there are various kinds of politics, divisions and discussions around this establishment. Yet, above all, at the end of the day, the artistic appeal of this remarkable architectural masterpiece becomes the main attraction for the visitors.

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post