|The narthex and the exonarthex are decorated with mosaics that date to 1315 to 1321. Christ Pantocrator in the lunette in the exonarthex over the door into the narthex.|
|The narthex has a lovely cycle of mosaics relating the life of Mary using stories popular in the 14th century from the Apocryphal Gospel of St. James. Here Mary is cuddled by her devoted parents Joachim and Anne.|
|The naos has lost nearly all its decoration. This part of the church was built in the 11th century |
and promptly partially collapsed. The corner piers were added in the 12th century
when the church was rebuilt.
|The parecclesion was added as a funeral and tomb chapel and is decorated with |
frescoes of death and destruction and of resurrection.
|Nearby the Chora Church is the Edirne Gate in the 5th century walls. On the 29th of May 1453, |
Mehmet II entered through this gate, ending the 1000 year Byzantine rule of Constantinople.
|Mehmet the Conqueror succeeded in capturing the city after nearly 800 years |
of trying to establish an Islamic capital in Constantinople.
|The huge interior is flooded with light through the huge windows penetrating every side.|
|I love the decorative use of colourful stone.|
|We followed the remains of the wall down to the Golden Horn.|
|An ordinary residential neighbourhood where a sunny Saturday afternoon meant |
sitting on front stoops watching children play
|A sign outside the mosque said it had been damaged in the 1999 earthquake so|
we assumed some of the homes were also shattered then.
|Some had access to interesting building materials for a unique wall.|
|And a tombstone shone bright with gold lettering.|
|And the view across the Golden Horn was stunning. We walked down to the ferry landing for a boat ride |
back to the Galata Bridge and back to our hotel.