I have to confess that the cat was truly unimpressed by our presence. I suppose a cat living in such a historical place, visiting with Presidents considers himself royalty and has no time for socializing with commoners such as Kati and me….oh well.
At least we still have our loyal “ninja” at home in Texas.
The third Hagia Sophia was constructed in 537 in 5 years, amazingly quickly considering the times. Since then it has served as a cathedral, mosque and now a museum. When it was first constructed, Constantinople was the capital of the eastern Roman Empire.
When the Ottoman’s conquered Constantinople in 1453 it was converted into a mosque until 1931 and reopened as a museum in 1935.
Inside Hagia Sophia
This picture illustrates the intersection of Islam and Christianity as it applies to Hagia Sophia’s history. Here we see the staircase on the right for the Imam’s mimbar where he sits when giving his sermon and the mihrab which indicates the direction to pray (towards mecca). Notice how the mihrab is off center as a result of the building not being intended to be a mosque.
We visited during Ramadan which was very fortunate. After sunset, there is a festival held in Hippodrome area that compares to the Chriskindlesmarkt’s in Germany.