532: Hagia Sophia – Istanbul, Turkey
Innovation: Hagia Sophia
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Built By: Emperor Justinian I
Designed By: Isidore of Miletus and Anthemius of Tralles
The Hagia Sophia is a basilica that has a vast system of vaults and semi-domes which concludes in a central dome that is 101 feet in diameter and 160 feet in height made of brick and mortar. This type of dome is called a pendentive dome; this dome consists of four triangular segments of a sphere surface, filling in the upper corners at the top to from a supportive circular dome. This allows lateral forces to be alleviated by dispersing its weight downwards. The brick dome has a wooden tension ring at its base to resist outward thrust and interrupt cracking. The atrium is 157 feet by 106 ft and 442 feet in diameter. The church of Hagia Sophia was made of material from a plethora of places, from columns from the Temple of Artemis, stones from Egyptian quarries, marble from Thessaly, black stone from Bosporusm, and yellow stone from Syria.