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Chiefly copies of actual inscriptions on Byzantine churches earlier than 1000 A.D., and as such of historic value. The frequent allusions to the brilliant effect created by the mosaics and precious marbles will be noticed.




Let the pious and godly Christian Epigrams take precedence, even if the pagans are displeased.

1.—Inscribed on the Tabernacle of Saint Sophia

The images[1] that the heretics took down from here our pious sovereigns replaced.

2.—Inscribed on the Apse of Blachernae

The divine Justin, the husband of Sophia, to vliom Christ granted the gift of restoring everything, and glory in war, finding that the temple of the V^irgin Mother was tottering, took the decayed part to pieces and built it up again securely.

3.—On the Same

This lovely temple shining with beauty the earlier Justin built to the Mother of God. A later Justin during his reign endowed it with more than its former splendour.

4.—On the Temple of St. John the Baptist ("the Forerunner") in the property of Studius

Studius built this fair house to John the great servant of Christ, and quickly gained the reward of his work by obtaining the consular fasces.

5.—On the Church of St. Thomas the Apostle in the property of Amantius

This house thou didst make for God, Amantius, in the middle of the sea, combating the swirling waves. Nor south nor north wind shall shake thy holy house, guarded as it is by this divine temple. May thy days be many; for thou by invading the sea hast made New Rome more glorious.

6.—On the Church of St. Theodore in the land of Sphoracius

Sphoracius having escaped from a fire built this temple to the Martyr.

7.—On the Same

Sphoracius, Antolius thy nephew rejoiced in repaying during thy life thy kindness in bringing him up, and now thou art dead ever pays thee grateful honour; so that he found for thee a new honour, and laid thee in the temple thou thyself didst build.

8.—On the Church of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul near St. Sergius in the property of Hormisdas

Honouring the King of Kings, Christ, with his works, Justinian built this glorious temple to Peter

and Paul, for by giving honour to His servants a man offereth great glory to the King Himself. Here is profit for the soul and for the eyes. Let each get what he hath need of by his prayers, and take joy in looking at the beauty and splendour of the house.


  1. Here and below of course = icons, pictures.