Sketch 12: Stars from the great Hagia Sophia

fig_012Hagia Sophia, or Aya Sofya in Turkish, is the largest Byzantine church in the world. Its current name is a shortened form of the full name The church of the Holy Wisdom of God. The current building is almost 1500 years old. It was commissioned in 532AD by the Emperor Justinian I, and designed by a physicist, Isidore of Miletus, and a mathematician, Anthemious of Tralles. The construction was finished in 537AD.

Hagia Sofia was designed and built as a Byzantine church. Therefore it contains numerous decorations that are typical of the churches from this particular period of time. These decorations do not resemble the ornaments that we are discussing in this book. However, after the church was converted to a mosque some of the later additions introduced a few geometric ornaments that are worth exploring. One of them is an incredibly large and nicely decorated minbar.

The complete sketch can be retrieved from here: sketch_12

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