Showing posts from May, 2019

Day #2 - Istanbul

Day #2 - the official tour did not begin until the afternoon so in the morning I toured alone and walked from the hotel to the Hagia Sofia, at the time it was built it was the largest church in all of Christendom. Later after the city fell in 1453 it was converted to a Mosque. Today it is a museum. I did not go in. That will be tomorrow. But I also saw the Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome, German Fountain, Suiliman’s Harem, and the Grand Bazaar. In the afternoon I met up with the tour and we took a boat ride on the Bosphorus. Istanbul is divided by the river. On one side is the new city (after 1453) in Asia and the other side is the old city of Byzantium in Europe. Dinner soon and then to bed. Tomorrow we go inside Hagia Sophia and then we fly to Antalya. Below is the Hagia Sophia - Holy Wisdom (behind this building is a smaller church/mosque name Hagia Eirene - Holy Peace) For some reason this site won’t let me add captions so photo 4: On the river Bosphorus looking towards Hagia Sophia,

Day #1 - Arrival

I have arrived. It was a long day. But despite the flight to Frankfurt being delayed which gave me only 30 minutes to catch the flight to Istanbul both me and my luggag arrived safely. I got to the hotel without trouble took a nap, hooked up with the tour leader and his wife for dinner and now I am ready for a nice sleep. Here are a couple photos.... More later... Flying over the Rhein river looking for Rheinmaidens: The remains of a Byzantine Victory gate built by Theodocius I:

The Adventure Begins

So, the adventure begins! I am at Lambert airport waiting for my flight to Toronto, which is the first leg of my trip to Istanbul. Once I arrive in Istanbul, Turkey I will join a tour led by the archeologist Dr Carl Rasmussen who is a specialist in geography of the ancient world. The tour will include Ephesus, Colossae, Corinth, Philippi, Delphi, Athens and lots of other places. I will try to post pictures regularly along with commentary!! But for today I am traveling. Here is information about the leader of our tour: Carl Rasmussen, PhD 5470 Free Photos and Commentary at: Twice Weekly Blog : Occasional Twitter : @go2Carl

The Old Testament as Opera

Below are a list of operas based on Old Testament stories (certainly not exhaustive) with some comments about the librettos and how they relate to the Biblical texts.  I will add pictures and links as I can. "David et Jonathas" - Marc-Antoine Charpentier (1688) – French This opera by Charpentier begins with the Witch of Endor (Prologue) – I Samuel 28:3-25 Then the opera begins by moving back in time. The basic narrative is pieced together from chapter 14 of I Samuel until Jonathan and his father Saul are killed (I Samuel 31 and II Samuel chapter 1 for David’s reaction). The libretto picks and chooses. Also the libretto has turned the Commander Joab (Joadab) into the bad guy. In the text Joab is the go-to guy to get violent and nasty things done, but he is not the one who initiates many of these things. Mostly in the Biblical narrative he does David's dirty work. Also, in the Biblical text Saul is pronounced as a failure long before Jonathan is even introduced