|Outside the Hagia Sophia|
|Interior of the Hagia Sophia|
|Minbar of the Hagia Sophia|
|Apse and dome of the Hagia Sophia|
|The Empress Zoe Mosaics|
The cathedral contains many beautiful mosaics usually combining Christian iconography with tributes to the Byzantine monarchs of the period. The Empress Zoe mosaic is a typical example, combining the central figure of the Christ Pantocrator dressed in blue in between Empress Zoe and Constantine IX. Archaeological evidence indicates the face Constantine IX is a replacement of an earlier mosaic depiction. It is believed that Empress Zoe had the mosaic altered to represent each of her three husbands. Constantine IX, her last husband, is the one that has survived.
|Virgin and child in between Emperor Justinian I and Emperor Constantine I|
|From the Calligraphy Exhibit|
In this exhibit, I began to notice the central role text plays in Islamic design and decoration. Their calligraphy is truly beautiful, and the primacy of text is really attractive to a logophile like me. I'll return to this topic when I write about our visit to Topkapi Palace.
|I am a fan of the Calligraphy Exhibit|