- Hagia Sophia
(Greek: "Holy Wisdom") Church in Istanbul, later a mosque and now a museum.It is the masterpiece of Byzantine architecture. Designed under Justinian I by Anthemius of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus, the original building was completed in less than six years (AD 532–37). It combined a longitudinal basilica and a centralized building in a wholly original manner, with a huge main dome (rebuilt 563) supported on pendentives and semidomes on either side. In plan it is almost square. There are three aisles separated by columns with galleries above and great marble piers rising up to support the dome. The walls above the galleries, as well as the base of the dome, are pierced by windows, whose light obscures the supports, giving the impression that the canopy floats on air.
* * *also called Church of the Holy Wisdom , Turkish Ayasofyacathedral built at Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey) under the direction of the Byzantine emperor Justinian I. It is a unique building and one of the world's great monuments, despite time's ravages. The structure, a domed basilica, was built in the amazingly short time of about six years, being completed in AD 537. The architects were Anthemius of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus.
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