Sultan Ahmed Mosque, Istanbul

One of the last masterpieces of classical Ottoman architecture, it is popularly known as the Blue Mosque, for the blue tiles on its inside walls.

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Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, Istanbul

The iconostasis of the Church of St George, within the grounds of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople in Istanbul.

The Greek presence in Turkey is now small, but the Ecumenicl Patriarchate still serves at the spiritual home of the Greek Orthodox Church for believers in Greece and scattered all over the world.  It claims its beginnings from the Apostle St Andrew.

The two-headed eagle in the centre of the picture is a symbol from the Byzantine Empire, representing the twin role of the Byzantine Emperor, as head both of the Church and the State.

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Hagia Sophia, Istanbul

Hagia Sophia.  Santa Sophia.  Aya Sofya.  Church of Holy Wisdom.  Has any other church in the world been witness to so many monumental events in history?  The eruption of the Great Schism.  The sacking of Constantinople by the Crusaders.  The fall of the Byzantine Empire to the Ottoman Turks.

Rebuilt many times over the years, this landmark of architecture is now a museum, constantly being restored.

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