Hagia Sophia Church Apse

Hagia Sophia Church Apse

A view looking east at the apse of the church and the semi-circular benches (synthronos) where the clergy sat.  The raised platform in the center of the synthronos is probably where the bishop's throne was placed.

The roped-off area, in the foreground, is where the altar once stood.

Justinian built the church in Nicea in the sixth century A.D.  Sultan Orhangazi turned it into a mosque in 1331.

In modern times the church/mosque was turned into a "museum" but more recently restored as a mosque.

The Seventh Ecumenical Council convened here in A.D. 787—the one that restored the veneration of icons in churches.