Hagia Sophia or officially Hagia Sophia Mosque (formerly Saint Sophia Church) is a historical mosque, old church and museum located in Hagia Sophia District of Trabzon. With the time prayer performed on Friday, 28 June 2013, it was reopened to the worship of Muslims 49 years later.
The name of Hagia Sophia, a monastery church built between 1204-1238 by Emperor Manuel I (1263-1250) of the Komninos Dynasty, who escaped after the occupation of Istanbul by the Latins and founded the Trabzon Empire in 1260. " It means. The building, which was used as a church after Fatih Sultan Mehmed's conquest of Trabzon in 1461, was transformed into a mosque by adding a pulpit and a muezzin hall by an ayân named Kürd Ali Bey in 1584. Julian Bordier, who came to the city in 1610, reported that the building, which was converted into a mosque, was kept empty and used for worship because it was not repaired. The building, which was closed to worship for a long time, was converted into a mosque after being repaired by Greek masters with 1865 kuruş collected by the Muslim community in 95.000, but it was used as a warehouse and military hospital by the Russian army that invaded Trabzon during World War I. The frescoes of the building, which was used as a mosque until 1960 after the war, were cleaned by the Russell Trust of Edinburgh University between 957-62 and then restored by the General Directorate of Foundations and turned into a museum in 1964. The building visited by tens of thousands of tourists every year. It is converted into a mosque and an imam is expected to be appointed. The transformation of the museum into a mosque is supported by some conservative politicians and media institutions, and even while Istanbul Hagia Sophia is expected to be opened to worship, various intellectuals and activists opposed the loss of its museum status on the grounds that the frescoes and the building would be damaged, and a petition called "Trabzon Hagia Sophia Museum should remain a museum". has been initiated. It was handed over to the General Directorate of Foundations by the Ministry of Culture on June 3, 2013. Then, due to court decisions and foundation registration, Hagia Sophia was reopened for Muslim worship on Friday, 28 June 2013, 49 years later.
The building, which is one of the most beautiful examples of the Late Byzantine Churches, has a closed-arm crucifix plan and has a high-hooped dome. It has three porticoes with porticoes to the north, west and south. The building was covered with different vaults on the main dome and the roof was covered with tiles by giving different elevations. In stone plastics, where a superior workmanship is seen, the effects of Islamic art of Seljuk Period as well as Christian art can be seen. Medallions with geometric interlocking decorations seen on the portico façades on the north and west, and muqarnas niches on the western façade have the characteristics of Seljuk stone engraving.
The most magnificent facade of the building is the south. The creation of Adam and Eve is described here in relief as a frieze. On the keystone of the arch on the south front, there is a single-headed eagle motif, which is the symbol of the Comninos Dynasty that reigned in Trabzon for 257 years. The main depiction of the dome is Jesus, the Hristos Pantocrator style that reflects his divine aspect. Below it is an inscription belt, and at the bottom is the angelic frieze. Twelve apostles are depicted between the windows. There are different compositions in pendants. Scenes such as the birth of Jesus, baptism, crucifixion, and the Day of Resurrection are described.