Ch 10 Essay hagia sophia

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Ch 10 Essay: Hagia Sophia
Juniper Ozbolt Sept. 6th, 2014 AP World History Mr. A Stever
Hagia Sophia was an important part of the Byzantine Empire. Discuss its past and present history as well as its unique construction. The rulers of the Byzantine Empire, Justinian and Theodora built the amazing and innovative church of Hagia Sophia. It was built during a time of political and social restlessness. Its difference from the Western Roman’s Christian churches symbolized the separating of the two halves of an empire. After 476 CE, the eastern half of the Roman Empire, Byzantium, had no western counterpart. There was no longer an emperor there. The emperor Justinian and his circus wife, Theodora, faced many riots by their people, especially in Constantinople, the Byzantine capital. Constantinople is present day Istanbul, Turkey. After the emperor and his wife had to quell one of these riots in the capital, they created Hagia Sophia in 532, as an expression of their gratitude. Hagia Sophia, or “the Church of Holy Wisdom”, was the first Christian church to not be built with a rectangular plan and the first with a dome. It has 40 windows of the bottom of the dome. The dome is 100 feet in diameter and 180 feet tall. These windows and the dome itself give the impression that the church is suspended in the air. Many thought that Hagia Sophia was a connection to Heaven and could have only been built with divine help. In following years, several installments of the Plague