Byzantine Church


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

Byzantine Church

another name for the Orthodox Church

Byzantine Church

 

(cross-of-domes church), a cruciform domed Christian church, which emerged during the development of medieval Byzantine architecture. The classical Byzantine church has four columns joined by arches in the center of the building, which support the drum upon which rests the dome. Pendentives mediate between the arches and the drum. Between the supports along the axes of the church, vaulted arms branch out in the form of a cross toward the outer walls. The corner rooms that are formed as a result of this plan are topped with small cupolas or vaults.

The structural composition of the Byzantine church is determined by this fixed system of interrelated spatial units. The central dome, which is raised high above the drum, is the principal element of the church. The vaulted arms of the cross are situated a story lower, and the corner rooms are even lower. The organization of the church is clearly visible from both inside and outside.

In addition to the organization of space, the plastic expressiveness of the massive walls and supports plays a large role in the creation of this architectural image. The vast surfaces of the interior walls and vaults are decorated with Byzantine religious paintings.

The type of cross-of-domes church that first appeared in the sixth century reached the height of its development from the ninth to the 12th century in the Constantinople school of architecture. Variations of this type of church developed in other schools of Byzantine architecture. Examples of these variations are churches with a dome on squinches, which are reinforced by eight supports; churches with a dome that is supported by two free-standing pillars and two walls; and churches in which two pairs of pillars were added—one pair at the apses and the other at the entrance (in medieval Greece). Another well-known type of Byzantine church had cupolas that covered the arms of the cross.

V. M. POLEVOI

References in periodicals archive ?
Urs Peschlow's study of stone barriers between the nave and aisles for organizing the laity concludes that early Byzantine churches with and without dividing barriers coexisted, and that these served a wide range of communities as cathedrals, parochial churches, monastic churches, and pilgrimage churches.
Dr Zadek says Maioumas was the first town in the area to convert to Christianity in the fourth century, that Orpheus-like figures are commonly found in Byzantine church mosaics and that Gaza was never populated by Jews.
Jedin enlisted the great Byzantine church historian Hans-Georg Beck to contribute sections on the Eastern church in the early volumes.
His last big installation, The Sea of Sun, 1992, was a heaving labyrinth, its "walls" made from rows of chains suspended from the ceiling and imprinted with colored imagery: walking into it was like entering a Byzantine church that had been built from banks of seaweed.
This is a Byzantine church of the Parma, Ohio, eparchy.
The Byzantine church was twice destroyed by the Arab crusades but was rebuilt in the 1770s.
The tour included the Siq, the Treasury, the Nabataean Amphitheatre, the Court and the Byzantine church.
The barbed wire that encloses the 1,500-year-old Byzantine church is not sufficient to preserve the area and the two gates located at each end allow drug users and others to enter the historic site.
The 1,500-year-old site was originally a Byzantine church and then converted to a mosque after the Muslim conquest of Istanbul in 1453.
Despite the energy devoted by American and Western European church historians and theologians to the question of the ordination of women in early Christianity (2) and in the (western) medieval Christian Church, (3) these scholars have shown comparatively little interest toward the female diaconate in the Byzantine Church, (4) even when comparative analysis could potentially help elucidate questions regarding the theology and practice of women's ordinations in the West.
806) with the establishment of the liturgical feast of the Sunday of Orthodoxy, to celebrate the fidelity of the Byzantine Church to the Catholic faith through the many trials and heresies of the previous five centuries.
Or choose to sit at the front and admire the beautiful Byzantine church.