Hagia Sophia Interior

Emperor Door

The Emperor Door

In Hagia Sophia, three doors of outer narthex which symbolize the Holy Trinity give way to the outer narthex with 5 doors. From there nine gates lead to heart of the church.

The largest (7 meter heigh) door is made of oak and has a bronze frame. It is the most magnificent door among the doors of Hagia Sophia, which were up to 40 in Byzantine times. The Emperor Door is believed to have been made of the woods from Noah’s Ark.

The Emperor Door of Hagia Sophia

Above the door, it’s found a metal box attributed as a coffin. According to legend a Byzantine Empress who was afraid of shakes wanted to be buried in a metal coffin. However, her last will seems to be in vain because of the holes on it. On the coffin, you can see also a relief of a bird on a throne and an open passage from Gospel.


About the author


Hagia Sophia Research Team (HSRT) consists of a group of people who likes to research Byzantine Heritage in Turkey by visiting and taking photos of the historical places.

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