Hagia Sophia; Slide 54

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Sophia-Maria mosaic; Hagia Sophia

Sophia-Maria

9th Century Mosaic

Hagia Sophia Istanbul

The Hagia Sophia
Istanbul Turkey

A special type of Madonna & Child icon called, the Wisdom thrones or Sophia thrones became popular a thousand years ago and the Greeks and Russians are still painting them.
Here is perhaps the most famous example, from the ceiling of the Hagia Sophia Cathedral, one of the seven wonders of the world, located in what’s now Turkey. Jerusalem was Christianity’s birthplace, but ancient Turkey (Asia Minor) was its cradle. Then Rome took over.

This mosaic is 1100 years old and called Sophia-Maria.
If Sophia incarnated as Mary, the hyphenated name makes sense.

The Throne in the icon is a code letting you know it’s not mortal Mary shown, but the Goddess Sophia-Maria. Another clue is that the baby Jesus doesn’t look at all like a baby, but like a miniature grown man. He represents humanity – the “child” of Sophia.

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