Two items that struck me of interest. The first is that the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey—one of the most historic/grandest churches of Christendom—now a “museum”—is being “eyed” to be converted back to a mosque! Recently the Koran was read within the “museum” and this may be the “nose of the camel inside of the tent!”
The current “Hagia Sophia” is the third structure to stand on this spot. The first church was built by the son of Constantine the Great,Constantius. It was burnt down in 404. The second was built by Theodosius II, and it was burnt down in 532.
View of the exterior of the Hagia Sophia. The minarets were added 1,000 years after the first church was built here! Click on Image to Enlarge and/or Download.
The present building was built by the great Byzantine Emperor Justinian and was dedicated on December 26, 537. It took six years to build and over 10,000 men worked on it. Although the dome has been repaired (rebuilt) a number of times, the church built by Justinian served as a Christian place of worship until Constantinople was captured by the Turk, Mehmet II on May 29, 1453.
Interior of the Hagia Sophia—without scaffolding!! The roundels were added by the Muslims over 1,000 years after the church was built. They contain the names of Allah, Mohamed, and early Califs. Click on Image to Enlarge and/or Download.
Mehmet II immediately turned the building into a mosque and it served as one of the major mosques of Istanbul until the reforms of Atatürk. It reopened in 1934 as a museum.
Harvard Loeb Classical Series — 60 Volumes!
Good news, the authoritative Loeb Classical series is now ON LINE. Bad news, it is expensive! For individuals $150 for the first year, and $65 for subsequent consecutive years. However, some of you may be able to have your Institution subscribe to the Institutional version—Free 60 Trial Here.
Key features include:
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- Greek keyboard
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Please note that some of the site’s most useful tools are features of “My Loebs,” the personal accounts available to all authorized users. We’d encourage you and your patrons to create your own accounts (via the “Sign up” link at the top of each page on the site) so as to utilize the digital Loeb Classical Library’s full capabilities.
Many of the questions about the digital Loeb Classical Library’s functionality, for example, or its relation to the print books of the series—are answered at http://www.loebclassics.com/page/faq/frequently-asked-questions