Theotokos Chrysokephalos in Trebizond

The Church of Theotokos Chrysokephalos (“Goldenheaded Virgin”), the cathedral of Trebizond, was originally attached to a monastery. The church, which stood in the center of the Middle City, was the metropolitical, coronation, and funerary church of the Grand Komnenoi. It was originally surrounded by monastic buildings and presumably the bishop’s palace.  It is a triple-aisled domed basilica with (originally) a single pentagonal apse, narthex, exonarthex, galleries above the aisles and narthexes, chamber or annex to the northeast, and north and south porches-the latter long excised and blocked for the mihrab. It has undergone a number of structural alterations. The major change of plan is that a dome and crossing were added to what was probably originally a galleried basilica. When the Ottoman took the city in 1461, it was converted into a mosque, called Fatih Mosque.

Plan by Balance

Map of Trebizond

Sources

The Byzantine Monuments and Topography of the Pontos by Anthony Bryer & David Winfield

Byzantine Painting at Trebizond by Millet and Talbot Rice

Byzantium’s Other Empire: Trebizond by Antony Eastmond

Byzantine Architecture by Cyril Mango

Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium edited by Alexander Kazhdan

“Religious Buildings of Trebizond” by D. Talbot Rice

“The Byzantine Churches of Trebizond” by Selina Balance

“La Sainte-Sophie de Trebizonde” by N. Brounov

“Les Monasteres et les Eglises de Trebizonde” by G. Millet

Resources

Trebizond Album (Byzantine Legacy Flickr)

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Created by David Hendrix Copyright 2016