Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

A beauty that should not be missed in Istanbul

Holy Savior of Chora is one of the most beautiful Byzantine churches located in Istanbul in the neighbourhoud of Edirnekapi. It is a must-see, a pure Byzantine wonder!

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

History: “Chora” means “in the countryside” because the church has been built outside of the Constantinople city, that is to say after the ramparts from the 4th century.

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

When the Theodosian wall was built in 413-414, the emperor Theodosius decided to leave the church in the defensive system and keep its name “Chora”. At the capture of Constantinople in 1453 (the time at which Byzantium ends), Sultan MEHMET II the conqueror decides to transform certain churches into mosques.

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

In 1511, he transformed Holy Savior of Chora into a mosque and renamed it “Kariye”, which comes from the Greek meaning “in the countryside”.
Other churches remained for Christians of the city.
Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul
RESPECT OF SULTANS: despite the fact that in Islam, the reproduction of faces is prohibited during the transformation of churches, successive sultans have always kept intact the frescoes and mosaics of these Christian places of worship by hiding them with plaster and wood to protect them, out of respect and love of art!

At the end of the Ottoman Empire in 1922, MUSTAFA KEMAL ATATÜRK decided to transform these old churches and new mosques into museums.
What a wonderful surprise came out when plaster and wood were removed from the walls!
Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

Several centuries of history resurface such as more or less intact Christian mosaics and frescoes, mostly very well preserved, thanks to the decision taken by Muslim Sultans several centuries before so that today English-speaking people can come and admire these Byzantine wonders!

This museum can be visited in summer from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. in winter from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. It is closed on Wednesdays (ravioli day).

Entrance is priced at 54 TL.

Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

Let the pictures speak:

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul

 

Istanbul--St-Sauveur-in-Chora
Holy Savior of Chora in Istanbul