Dismantling of scaffold again reveals sublime mosaic of Angel Seraphim in Hagia Sophia
A mosaic depicting the Angel Seraphim has again been uncovered on the ceiling of the iconic Hagia Sophia, when it came to light during the dismantling of a scaffold set up in the UNESCO World Heritage site roughly seven years ago to assist in restoration works.
Works within the 6th century cathedral, considered the greatest of all basilicas in eastern Christendom, come months after the Islamist Turkish government, and specifically autocrat Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, insolently decided to reconvert Hagia Sophia into a mosque – changing its status from a landmark museum.
The mosaic depicts the six-winged Angel Seraphim.
In 2009, conservators uncovered one of the four mosaics depicting angels, hidden under plaster and metal for 160 years, when the Hagia Sophia was used as a mosque.
The specific mosaic, which measures 1.5 meters by one meter, was last seen by Ottoman Sultan Abdülmecid, and Swiss architect Gaspare Fossati, who directed restoration efforts at the Hagia Sophia between 1847 and 1849.
Abdülmecid was apparently unmoved by the stunning mosaic and ordered that it be plastered over.