The Ayasofaya (also spelled as Haiga Sophia) is a former Greek Orthodox basilica, which later became an Imperial Mosque, and is currently a museum. The word "Sophia" is a Latin phonetic spelling of the Greek word "Wisdom"...this the structure became known as "the Wisdom of God". The structure was built in 537 as an Eastern Orthodox Cathedral and he seat of the Patriarchate of Constantinople - actually it was the third such structure on the site, with the first two being destroyed by rioters - except for the period between 1204 and 1261 when it was converted into. Catholic Cathedral. In 1454, the Ottomans converted the edifice into a mosque and it stayed that way until 1931 when it was secularized and work began to make it a museum. Next to the Blue Mosque, the Ayasofya is the second most visited site in Turkey.
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Carl and Lorraine Aveni are two retirees planning on traveling through Europe for at least one year.