Church of Saint Sophia

Ohrid, North Macedonia

The Church of Saint Sophia in Ohrid is one of the most important monuments of North Macedonia, housing architecture and art from the Middle Ages.

The current church was built on the foundations of a metropolitan cathedral demolished in the first decade of the 6th century by the Barbarian invasions. The next church was built during the First Bulgarian Empire, after the official conversion to Christianity. Some sources date the building of the church during the rule of Knyaz Boris I (852 – 889). It was basically rebuilt in the last decade of the 10th century as a patriarchal cathedral in the form of a dome basilica, after the replacement of the capital of Bulgaria in Ohrid, during the reign of Tsar Samuil, when the church was the seat of the Bulgarian Patriarchate, an autocephalous Patriarchate. Later it became a seat of the Archbishopric of Ohrid, under the Patriarchate of Constantinople until the 18th century.

It was converted into a mosque during the rule of the Ottoman Empire. The interior of the church has been preserved with frescoes from the 11th, 12th and 13th century, which represent some of the most significant achievements in Byzantine painting of the time. The main part of the church was built in the 11th century, while external additions were built by Archbishop Gregory II in the 14th century.

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Details

Founded: 9th century AD
Category: Religious sites in North Macedonia

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Алиса Карасик (8 months ago)
Very beautiful frescos, definitely must visit. Entrance is 100 denars
sofija anicic (8 months ago)
Lovely place, nice people
Steven Weber (9 months ago)
An absolute must visit place. Over a millennium of history. Entry is 100 dinars. The church was empty when I was there in August 2021 and also October 2020. Just imagine if these walls could talk. It’s also worth going there and talking in the church just to see how your voice sounds. Very unique acoustics. Highly recommend for anyone visiting Ohrid! A+
Tamara Damceska (13 months ago)
Peaceful place. Beautiful
Tamara D (13 months ago)
Peaceful place. Beautiful
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