Archive for the ‘Architecture’ Category

Sabratha   no comments

photo and text from wikipedia

Sabratha

Sabratha, Sabratah or Siburata (Arabic: صبراتة‎), in the Az Zawiyah District[1] in the northwestern corner of modern Libya, was the westernmost of the “three cities” of Tripolis. From 2001 to 2007 it was the capital of the former Sabratha Wa Surman District. It lies on the Mediterranean coast about 65km (40 miles) west of Tripoli (ancient Oea). The extant archaeological site was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982.

Written by enfoquec on January 9th, 2011

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Ben Youssef Madrasa   no comments

photo and text from wikipedia

Ben Youssef MadrasaBen Youssef Madrasa

The Ben Youssef Madrasa was an Islamic college in Marrakech, Morocco, named after the amoravid sultan Ali ibn Yusuf (reigned 1106–1142), who expanded the city and its influence considerably. It is the largest Medrasa in all of Morocco.

The college was founded during the period of the Marinid (14th century) by the Marinid sultan Abu al-Hassan and allied to the neighbouring Ben Youssef Mosque. The building of the madrasa was re-constructed by the Saadian Sultan Abdallah al-Ghalib (1557–1574). In 1565 the works ordered by Abdallah al-Ghalib were finished, as confirmed by the inscription in the prayer room. Its 130 student dormitory cells cluster around a courtyard richly carved in cedar, marble and stucco. The carvings contain no representation of humans or animals as required by Islam, and consist entirely of inscriptions and geometric patterns. This madrasa was one of the largest theological colleges in North Africa and may have housed as many as 900 students. One of its best known teachers was Mohammed al-Ifrani (1670-1745).

Closed down in 1960, the building was refurbished and reopened to the public as an historical site in 1982.

Written by enfoquec on January 5th, 2011

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Hagia Sophia   no comments

photo and text from wikipedia

Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia (from the Greek: Ἁγία Σοφία, “Holy Wisdom”; Latin: Sancta Sophia or Sancta Sapientia; Turkish: Aya Sofya) is a former Orthodox patriarchal basilica, later a mosque, and now a museum in Istanbul, Turkey. From the date of its dedication in 360 until 1453, it served as the cathedral of Constantinople, except between 1204 and 1261, when it was converted to a Roman Catholic cathedral under the Latin Patriarch of Constantinople of the Western Crusader established Latin Empire. The building was a mosque from 29 May 1453 until 1934, when it was secularized. It was opened as a museum on 1 February 1935.

The Church was dedicated to the Logos, the second person of the Holy Trinity, its dedication feast taking place on December 25, the anniversary of the incarnation of the Logos in Christ. Although it is sometimes referred to as Sancta Sophia (as though it were named after Saint Sophia), sophia is the phonetic spelling in Latin of the Greek word for wisdom – the full name in Greek being Ναός τῆς Ἁγίας τοῦ Θεοῦ Σοφίας, “Church of the Holy Wisdom of God”.

Famous in particular for its massive dome, it is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture and is said to have “changed the history of architecture.” It was the largest cathedral in the world for nearly a thousand years, until Seville Cathedral was completed in 1520. The current building was originally constructed as a church between 532 and 537 on the orders of the Byzantine Emperor Justinian and was the third Church of the Holy Wisdom to occupy the site, the previous two having both been destroyed by rioters. It was designed by Isidore of Miletus, a physicist, and Anthemius of Tralles, a mathematician.

The church contained a large collection of holy relics and featured, among other things, a 49 foot (15 m) silver iconostasis. It was the seat of the Patriarch of Constantinople and the religious focal point of the Eastern Orthodox Church for nearly one thousand years. It is the church in which Cardinal Humbert in 1054 excommunicated Michael I Cerularius – which is commonly considered the start of the Great Schism.

In 1453, Constantinople was conquered by the Ottoman Turks under Sultan Mehmed II, who subsequently ordered the building converted into a mosquThe bells, altar, iconostasis, and sacrificial vessels were removed and many of the mosaics were plastered over. Islamic features — such as the mihrab, minbar, and four minarets — were added while in the possession of the Ottomans. It remained a mosque until 1935, when it was converted into a museum by the Republic of Turkey.

For almost 500 years the principal mosque of Istanbul, Hagia Sophia served as a model for many other Ottoman mosques, such as the Sultan Ahmed Mosque (Blue Mosque of Istanbul), the Şehzade Mosque, the Süleymaniye Mosque, the Rüstem Pasha Mosque and the Kılıç Ali Paşa Mosque.

Written by enfoquec on September 22nd, 2010

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