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Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia

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View Around the world ın 8 months on chrisvasil's travel map.

The blue mosque was not nearly as blue as I was expecting. Very impressive architecture, and massive, and very pretty walls and ceilings, but not nearly blue enough to merit the title.
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The Hagia Sophia was pretty cool, and it was really nice that we had seen a documentary about it a few months ago (well actually a travel show about Istanbul that I downloaded, but that was the only part I remembered). A very cool building, it was one of the main catholic churches before (Romans? Greeks?) lost istanbul to the (Byzantine? Ottoman?) Empire. Writing without Internet, I can't find out, but that's the story... Anyway it was then converted to a mosque, with all the religious imagery and most of the imagery in general plastered and painted over, and 6 columns (minerets?) added to the original structure. It was subsequently restored, and on many places on the ceiling we can see black marks from where crosses used to be

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or layers with a raised, more freshly-painted area and nearby a much older, but prettier (shiny and more elaborate designs) painting.

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There are also mosaics that were really pretty and were uncovered, but in many cases parts are missing.

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One thing I had a lot of trouble figuring out was how they got these huge multicolored plaques of marble (this one is about 6x6ft) to be perfectly symmetrical. We figured out that they slice the marble, then have slices face each other.

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Posted by chrisvasil 12:48 Archived in Turkey Tagged tourist_sites

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