Byzantine Churches in Constantinople Part 39

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19. In the centre of the arch: the Head of Christ in a medallion.

The Western Bay.

20. At the south-western corner where the wall is much damaged, a saint.

21. Above No. 20, to the west of the window: Christ appearing to His disciples.

22. To the east of the window, an indistinct scene, perhaps the Entombment.

23. At the north-western corner: S. Samona.

24. A saint, not named.

25. Over the door two saints, one of whom holds a cross.

26. The northern archway: In the centre is the door to the narrow pa.s.sage between the parecclesion and the church. To the left, Jacob's Ladder; to the right, Moses at the Burning Bush. In the bush is a medallion of the Virgin and Child, and from the bush an angel addresses Moses, who holds his veil in his hand.

27, 28, 29, 30. In the pendentives of the dome: the Four Evangelists sitting at desks.

31. The dome is divided into twelve segments by ribs, and is pierced by twelve windows. Above each window is an angel holding a spear, and below him is the legend 'Holy.' In the crown are the Virgin and Child in a medallion.

32. A saint holding a small cross; below, in the south wall, the archivolt with the epitaph to Tornikes above it.

33. A warrior saint with his sword and shield.

34. Above Nos. 32 and 33 on the arch, a figure, clad in a white mantle and blue robe with a scroll in his hand, points to an angel, who holds his drawn sword in the right hand and the scabbard in the left hand, and seems to be attacking several persons in the right-hand corner. Behind him is a walled and fortified city, probably Jericho.

35. On the north wall: S. Eutadius.

36. The Adoration by the magi.

37, 38. On the west wall: the figures of two saints, not named.

Epitaph in honour of Tornikes:--

[Greek: hosous an hathroizoi tis enthade krotous nekrous ho tapheis exelenxei Tornikes, ho tris aristeus e konstaulos megas, hosper mimous, beltiste, pithekous leon.

hos, basilikon apotechtheis haimaton, 5 pareschen autois prosphye kai ton tropon.

poion gar ouk en aretes eidos pheron, hos ho prepon hekaston ezetei chronos?

boulephoros d' oun, kai pro tes helikias kai demagogos, kai krites en anchinous. 10 kai pros men echthrous taktiken epnei phloga, keraunos on aphyktos autois athroois, te de stratia patrikos epestatei, phrouron ta koina, me klape to sympheron.

kedous de tychon eugenous kai kosmiou 15 kai basilikon proslabon authis genos kai lamp.r.o.n hypodeigma pareis ton bion, keitai monastes euteles en osteois.

helie kai ge kai teleutaioi krotoi.

penthei de mikrou pan to Rhomaion genos, 20 hoson per auton agnooun ou tynchanei.

all' o mone, zon kai methiston tas physeis, ei pou ti kai peprachen auto me prepon lysin paraschon ten Eden kleron didou.]

In line 7 the inscription reads *[Greek: phcron]* instead of [Greek: pheron]; in line 23 *[Greek: propon]* for [Greek: prepon].

Good Friend! However many dead applauses (celebrities) One may collect here, The entombed Tornikes, who was thrice a foremost man or Grand Constable, Will put them to shame as a lion will put to shame mimicking apes.

He who was by birth of royal blood, Presented also a manner of life conformed to that descent.

For what form of virtue did he not possess Such as the fitting occasion demanded each?

Therefore he was a councillor before the usual age, And a popular leader and an acute judge, And upon enemies he breathed a strategic flame (such as military rules required), And was an irresistible thunderbolt upon their serried ranks.

He presided over the army like a father, Guarding the commonweal lest any advantage to it should be stolen.

Contracting a highly-born and seemly marriage connection, And securing thus again royal affinity,[551]

And leaving his life as a splendid example, He lies a poor monk among bones!

O sun, O earth, O final applauses!

Well-nigh the whole Roman race laments him, As much of it as is not ignorant of him.

But O only living One and transformer of natures, If perchance he did aught that was not fitting for him, Granting him pardon, give him Eden as his inheritance.[552]

[542] Diehl, _etudes byzantines: Les mosaques de Kahrie Djami_.

[543] An English translation of the Protoevangelium is found in the Ante-Nicene Christian Library, vol. xvi.

[544] The remarkable head-dress he wears was given him as a special distinction by the Emperor Andronicus II. Palaeologus. The poet Philes (ode 41 in the appendix to vol. ii. of his works, lines 117-19) says [Greek: phorounta chrysen erythran ten kalyptran hen doron auto synanechonti kratos Anax ho lampros Andronikos paresche].

[545] A work reproducing, under the Pope's authority, the eighty-two miniatures ill.u.s.trating the _Life of the Madonna_, which was composed by a monk James in the twelfth century (_Cod. Vatic. Gr._ 1162), is announced (Danesi, Editore, Roma, 1911), with a preface and descriptions of the miniatures by Cosimo Stornajolo. The miniatures are said to rival those of the Greek Codex 1028 in the National Library in Paris.

[546] _Op. cit._ pp. 134-41.

[547] i. p. 303.

[548] _Carmina_ (ed. Treu), A. 1004, 1039-1042; B. 322-334.

[549] Diehl, _etudes byzantines: Les mosaques de Kahrie Djami_.

[550] See on the whole subject, C. Diehl, in the Gazette des Beaux-Arts, troisieme periode, tome 33, and in his _Manuel d'art byzantin_, pp. 732-41; Schmitt in his monograph on the Chora; Muhlmann, _Archiv fur christliche Kunst_, 1886-87.

[551] Alludes to his marriage with a relative of the imperial family.

[552] In the translation I have been a.s.sisted by Sir W. M. Ramsay, Professor Bury, and Mr. E. M. Antoniadi. The meaning of [Greek: teleutaioi krotoi] is not clear. Various interpretations have been suggested; to read [Greek: brotoi], mortals, instead of [Greek: krotoi], and to construe [Greek: teleutaioi] adverbially, 'finally, O mortals!'; to understand a reference to the judgment day, 'O applauses given at the final judgment'; to take the phrase as equivalent to, 'O celebrities at (or to) the very end of time'; to understand it as signifying the eulogies actually given to the deceased by the poet.

Professor Tendes, of Athens, whom I thank for his courtesy in this connection, suggests that the meaning is similar to that of the phrase [Greek: ta teleutaia] in the modern Greek form of eulogy, [Greek: ekame polla, alla ta teleutaia tou].... 'He did many things, but his last performances!' (surpa.s.sed all his previous deeds). Here the meaning would therefore be, 'O grandest achievements that men praise!'



The dating of the Constantinople churches is a problem of great difficulty, and, in the absence of doc.u.mentary evidence, we must often be contented with very indefinite suggestions. Many churches are known to have been founded at dates which are evidently earlier than the existing buildings, and have apparently been rebuilt at some later date of which the record has been lost. Other churches are known to have been 'repaired,' and here the question of how far 'repair' means 'rebuilding'

is sometimes insoluble. Repair may mean simply a fresh coat of paint.

The architectural characteristics afford a certain clue, and the following chronological scheme has been drawn up by their guidance:--

The pre-Justinian period is characterised by simple construction and detail of a late Roman type. Of this we have one example--the basilica of S. John of the Studion, founded about 463. The existing building appears to be original.

The Justinian period commences with the beginning of the sixth century.

It is characterised by the development of the drumless dome on pendentives. The plan is complicated, and the buildings are large in comparison with those of later date. To this period belong SS. Sergius and Bacchus (527 A.D.), the baptistery of S. Sophia, and the 'Great Church' of S. Sophia itself. S. Andrew in Krisei and S. Saviour in the Chora probably date from this period. The carved detail of the former closely resembles that of SS. Sergius and Bacchus, and the plan of the latter connects it with S. Sophia, Salonica (sixth century).

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Byzantine Churches in Constantinople Part 39 summary

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