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Panayia Drosiani

Panayia Drosiani Review

Owing to a good asphalt road, Moni ("monastery"), high in the mountains overlooking Naxos's greenest valley, has become a popular place for a meal or coffee on a hot afternoon. Local women make embroideries for Chora's shops. Just below Moni is one of the Balkans' most important churches, Panayia Drosiani, which has faint, rare Byzantine frescoes from the 7th and 8th centuries. Its name means Our Lady of Refreshment, because once during a severe drought, when all the churches took their icons down to the sea to pray for rain, only the icon of this church got results. The fading frescoes are visible in layers: to the right when you enter are the oldest—one shows St. George the Dragon Slayer astride his horse, along with a small boy, an image one usually sees only in Cyprus and Crete. According to legend, the saint saved the child, who had fallen into a well, and there met and slew the giant dragon that had terrorized the town. Opposite him is St. Dimitrios, shown killing barbarians. The church is made up of three chapels—the middle one has a space for the faithful to worship at the altar rather than in the nave, as became common in later centuries. Next to that is a very small opening that housed a secret school during the revolution. It is open mornings and again after siesta; in deserted winter, ring the bell if it is not open.

    Contact Information

  • Phone: 22850/31003
  • Location: Moni
Updated: 05-17-2011

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