Photographer's Note

The Holy Monastery of the Transfiguration(Metamorphosis) of Christ(Great-Meteoron)

Some short infos:
The monastery, built on an imposing rock, is the oldest, the biggest and the most important among the monasteries of Meteora which are preserved today. It was founded little before the mid-14th century (around 1340) by a scholar monk of Mount Athos, Saint Athanasios Meteorites. In the beginning, he built on the rock a church to the Mother of God. He also dedicated the monastery (the Monastery of the Virgin Mary of Meteora rock-Petra-) to her. Besides, he built cells so that the monks who began to concentrate there could live. Then, he built another church honoured to the Transfiguration of Christ. This church constituted the monastery katholikon and the definitive name of the monastery attributes to this church.

An important person was also his successor and second founder of the monastery, monk Saint Iosaph (one-time king Ioannis Uresis Paleologos). During the 40 years of his monastic life, Saint Iosaph built cells, hospital, cistern, he renovated the church of the Transfiguration (it is the sanctuary which has today the form of a church) and he was among the first ones who built the monastery of Ypsilotera (of Kalligraphon) on a steep and inaccessible rock opposite the monastery of Great Meteoron.

The monastery flourished particularly in the mid-16th century. Thanks to imperial and royal donations it became the most powerful of all the monasteries of Meteora. In 1544/1545, today's magnificent nave and narthex of the imposing katholikon (the old church turned into sanctuary) were built. Later, a refectory, a kitchen, a hospital-home for the aged, a tower, small chapels and joined ladders were built. On the other hand, the monastery suffered from destructions: incursions, thieving, looting and fires.

The monastery of Great Meteoron has already more than 600 years of existence. Its monastic presence and its fame have never ceased to exist. It is a real bastion of orthodox monasticism and Christendom.

> More infos at site

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Additional Photos by Mpampis Mantoukas (Xalkida) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2291 W: 339 N: 2759] (11744)
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