Nicholas attended the first Ecumenical Council in AD 325
One of Alexander the Great’s generals founded the city in 316 BC, naming it Antigonela for himself. When taken by another general, it was named Nicaea for his wife. Nicaea became an important religious center following Constantine’s edit of tolerance for Christianity in AD 313. The city has been important in the Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk, and Ottoman empires
Located on the eastern shore of Lake Iznik, the city has long been a stopping place on the route between Constantinople and Anatolia. The area surrounding Nicaea is fertile with rich agriculture.
When controversy arose about the nature of Jesus Christ, Constantine called the first Ecumenical Council to Nicaea in AD 325 to settle the issue. All the bishops came, meeting for two months in the Senatus Palace, now submerged in Lake Iznik. The council affirmed Christ’s divinity and established what is now known as the Nicene Creed. Nicaea hosted another Ecumenical Council in 787, that rejected iconoclasm, thus permitting the use of icons in worship. This second Nicaean council met in Hagia Sophia.
In 1075 the Seljuk commander Süleyman Sah I changed Nicaea’s name to Iznik and made it his capital. Through the years, particularly in the 16th and 17th centuries, Iznik has been renown for tiles and ceramics that have greatly influenced decoration in mosques and palaces throughout Turkey. Described as the third ‘holy city’ after Jerusalem and the Vatican, the Second Vatican Council in 1962, declared Iznik a ‘holy city’ for Christians.
Describes the culture and places of the Graeco-Roman Empire that was home to St Nicholas
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