On reading the last two posts on the fall of Hagia Sophia, a reader writes:
“So interesting to see the things for real, that is, photographed here and now by someone I know. History books can get awfully abstract, but when you see something photographed it becomes very easy to picture the events. In fact, seeing a photograph you almost can’t not picture the events. With the photographs of the walls, you can imagine mounted riders coming up to them, or scaffolding being built, or picking out good places for defenses, etc. In the photograph of the whole interior of Hagia Sophia, you can hear how the sound must echo in the large space, you can feel that the shafts of sunlight must be warm, etc. – the photograph engages the senses and very quickly the imagination. (Thus why you need art in church!)”
The interior space of Hagia Sophia is filled with a golden light, from the sun shining on the mosaics. Four portraits of angels in the dome would have shimmered when the natural light reflected on the dome.