VI.Leon Mosaic, located on the top of the Imperial Gate, welcomes you as soon as you enter the enchanting realm of Hagia Sophia.
This fascinating mosaic was rediscovered by the architect Fossati in 1848. However , its maintenance and cleaning was done by another architect, T. Whittemore in 1933.
The width of the mosaic is 5 meters and the height is 2.6 meters.
One of the most commonly depicted scenes in the classical Christian art, Jesus image blessing the all humanity with his right hand while holding a roll of paper with his left hand, is used in this beautiful mosaic as well.
Jesus Christ is featured as sitting on throne with an open Bible in his hand while blessing the whole humanity. The writings of the Bible are in Greek . It is translated as ‘Peace be upon you all, I am the Light of the world ‘ .
In this detailed mosaic, Jesus Christ, with a halo above his head which implies his eternal holiness, sits on a throne ornamented with precious Stones and his feet are on a flat platform.
The person who pays a sincere homage to Jesus by bending towards to the feet of the Christian prophet , is the East Roman Emperor VI. Leonor.
VI. Leon’s nickname was Wise Leon or “Philosopher Leon’ who was one of the most prominent figures of Byzaantium history. Moreover, he was seen as a soothsayer and even as a saint but in reality he was a theologian , artist and inventor.
6.Leon violated the maximum of 3 marriage rules of the Orthodox sect and made his fourth marriage since he did not have a son. He had made this mosaic in the intention to be forgiven by his people and clerics.
In the monogram on the right side of Jesus Christ, we can see Virgin Mary’s portrait pointing his son.
In the monogram on his left shoulder, the guardian of this magnificent church, Gabriel the Archangel is depicted.