Saint Antoine Church in Istanbul
This is the largest Catholic church in Istanbul. It was built quite recently, according to Istanbul standards of course... After all, a hundred years is just a moment for the city on the Bosphorus and the temple that strikes its visitors with its amazing, mannered architecture. Besides, the city has a 7-hundred-year-old history... Antoine church is located on Istiklal Avenue, the district of Taksim. This place has long been chosen by the Europeans in Constantinople. Genoese and Venetian merchants built their districts, founded trading colonies, and, of course, erected churches. Since then, there were many Catholic churches left in Pera and Beyoglu districts, but all of them are not very large in size. At the end of XIX - early XX centuries, the Catholic community of Istanbul appealed to the Ottoman authorities to allow the construction of a bigger church. The permission was given, and in several years the Church of St. Antoine was erected on Istiklal. It was built in the style of Italian architecture, but despite this it has the elements of oriental style. They are imperceptible but very fascinating... Azure colors in interior decoration, construction of the dome... At the same time - quite in the tradition of Istanbul eclecticism - there are typically Byzantine features in the temple and even of the early Byzantine period. We are talking about wall-paintings on the dome of the church, depicting scenes from the Gospels. This is how the illiterate studied the New Testament in the ancient churches of Constantinople... Thanks to the result of mixing styles, Saint Antoine Church appeared to be a very beautiful and unusual building. Being adorned with the statues of the Virgin Mary and the saints, it is open to everyone, not just to believers. There is another Catholic church a few steps from this one.