Sultanahmet, The Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, Turkey

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Sultanahmet, The Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, Turkey

This 17th century mosque, facing Hagia Sophia, is famous for its beautiful blue tile work ornamenting its interior walls. Its six slim minarets distinguish it from other mosques, which normally have two or four minarets.

It was built from 1609 to 1616, during the rule of Ahmed I. Like many other mosques, it also houses the tomb of the founder, a madrasah and a hospice. While still used as a mosque, Sultanahmet is one of the most popular, and important, tourist attractions in Istanbul.

Sultanahmet is considered to be the last great mosque of the Ottoman classical period, as it is the culmination of two centuries of both Ottoman mosque and Byzantine church development. It incorporates some Byzantine elements of Hagia Sophia along with traditional Islamic architecture.

Hagia Sophia, famous in particular for its massive dome, is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture and is said to have “changed the history of architecture.” While it was built in 360 as the Greek Patriarchal cathedral of Constantinople, in 1453 it was converted into a mosque. That is until 1931, when it was secularized and turned into a museum.

It was the largest cathedral in the world for nearly a thousand years.

The current building (third one to occupy the site) was originally built as a church around 532 on the orders of Emperor Justinian. It was designed by the Greek scientists Isidore of Miletus, a physicist, and Anthemius of Tralles, a mathematician.

Source (Amos Chapple):–from-the-taj-mahal-to-the-kremlin–using-a-drone-1

(but edited by me)

Plage de Montmartin-sur-Mer