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Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia or, as the Turks call it, Ayasofya, is the symbol of Istanbul. It was built during the mandate of Justinian between 532 and 537 and is one of the masterpieces of Byzantine art.

Between 1204 and 1261, Saint Sophia was the Pope's church. In 1453 it was taken by the Ottoman Empire and converted into a mosque. The Ottomans endowed the church with four minarets, a theological school and a public dining room.

Located in the highest point of Istanbul, Hagia Sophia defines the panorama of the city. Its four minarets and dome of more than 30 meters in diameter are the most characteristic image of the Turkish metropolis.

Inside

The interior of Santa Sofia is breathtaking: the dimensions of the main room (70 by 74 meters), diffused lighting, huge decorative medallions and monolithic columns will leave you with your mouth open.

On the second floor of the basilica you can find various mosaics of great historical interest. The most prominent mosaic shows Emperor Constantine and Empress Zoe worshiping Christ.

In addition to mosaics, on the second floor is also the tomb of Enrique Dándolo, Venetian duke who died in Constantinople in 1205.

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