Chora Museum (Chora Church) in Istanbul Interactive Guide

Church of Chora

Istanbul's Byzantine Marvel

The Church of Chora book is the most comprehensive interactive guide describing some of the oldest and finest surviving Byzantine mosaics and frescoes in the Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora, Istanbul, Turkey.

A unique reader experience with the use of intercative maps, voice narrations, videos, references to the Bible describing each episode, original Greek text appearing on the mosaics and frescoes and over 300 detailed photographs.


Explore Chora Museum's Naos Mosaics

Explore the Naos Mosaics

Chora Museum

The main dome of the Chora church is the Naos. It has a size of 10.5 m x 15 m., it is supported by four columns, surrounded by six-teen long windows and is well illuminated by natural light. The main room’s floor and walls are covered with marbl eup to the cornice level,one is also decorated with Theodoros Metochite’s monograms. Inside the apse is the mihrab made in the Ottoman period, indicating the direction of Mecca. The Naos includes the Death of the Virgin (Greek: “Η Κοίμηση της Θεοτόκου”), the Virgin the Hodegetria (Greek, Oδηγήτρια, One who shows the way), and Jesus Christ holding the Book of Gospels, open to Matthew.

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Chora Museum Outer Narthex

Explore the Outer Narthex Mosaics

Chora Museum

Outer narthex (Greek: Εξωνάρθηκας) is the first part of the church one enters. It is a transverse corridor 4 meters wide, 23 meters long and its parallel to inner narthex. It contains narrative images from the Cycle of Infancy of Christ represented in the lunettes as well as numerous of scenes of the miracles of Christ. The stories of the Journey of the Magi in front of the enthroned King Herod and the Massacre of the Innocents where King Herod commands to execute all male children, are also represented in multiple scenes.

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Chora Museum Inner Narthex

Explore the Inner Narthex Mosaics

Chora Museum

Inner narthex is a rectangular space of 4 meters wide and 18 meters long and runs parallel to outer Narthex. It consists of lunettes and vaults which are decorated with the lives of the Virgin and miracles of Christ as well as standing images of saints. Inner narthex hosts an oversized representation of the Deesis, decorating the eastern wall of the nar-thex depicts Christ and the Virgin with the former founders Isaac Komnenos and the nun Melanie kneeling at their feet.

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Chora Museum Parekklesion

Explore the Parekklesion Frescoes

Chora Museum

The Parekklesion (Greek: Παρεκκλήσιον) is rectangular and single aisled, the funerary chapel houses fresco paintings, figural representations and portraits, lunettes, and four arched tombs or Arcosolia. It was designed as a shelter for the tombs including the one of Metochites’ but was also used for the performance of the rituals related to death and burial as this is evident throughout with scenes of resurrection, afterlife, and saintly intercession. On its walls hosts a plethora of full-figure portraits of martyrs and warrior saints, holy persons recognized by the Byzantines as mediators to reach God.

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