Mount Athos (Aynoroz)

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mount athos monasteries

Mount Athos is a peninsula in northern Greece (in the geographical region of Macedonia). It is home to 20 Orthodox Christian monasteries and administratively it is an autonomous polity, governed by a Holy Community consisting of representatives of those monasteries. Civil authority is represented by a Civil Governor appointed by the Foreign Ministry of Greece.

A fresco with Saint Mercurius and Artemius of Antioch

A fresco with Saint Mercurius and Artemius of Antioch.

In terms of culture, however, Mount Athos retains many Byzantine traditions & items and indeed some commentators have stated that it is like a place ‘frozen in time’. The Mount operates under a charter granted by Emperor Ioannes Tzimisces in 972. Byzantine cultural and religious practices are retained in those monasteries, most of which were built between the 10th and 15th centuries and are scattered over the heavily forested, hilly peninsula. They posses many medieval art treasures, including liturgical objects and vestments, Christian texts, Byzantine imperial chrysobulls (decrees), icons and holy relics. As such, one can say that Mount Athos is still Byzantine in a way.

mount athos aynaroz dagi

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