The Touristic Info Halkidiki informs: Mount Athos - Monasteries and skites

Moni Esfigmenou

Greek-orthodox, Holiday: 40th day after Easter

When exactly the monastery, which is consecrated to the Ascension of Christ, was built is unknown. In any case, it is part of the oldest buildings in Athos. They mention that it was found in 1016AD. 

Nevertheless, today more people assume that it was founded in the end of the 10th Century. Another tradition mentions a monk named Esphigmenos, which is viewed as the founder. 

Unclear is also the name of the monastery, because "esphigmenos" (the restricted) could be given due to its location. It is like a castle from the Middle Ages constricted by hills, right on the beach of the east coast of the Holy Mountain. The first written mention appeared in the year 1030AD 

The Typikon of 1045AD lists the monastery in the fifteenth place. Then from 1095AD to 1300AD we have nothing about the history of the monastery. Only in the 14th Century, the monastery is mentioned once again. It was since this time under the protection of the Byzantine emperors, as well as donated by Serbian rulers. 

Although the direct coastal monastery had repeatedly been a victim of pirates, in the year 1533AD it was completely destroyed by them.
At the beginning of the 18th Century due to high debts the monastery didn’t go well, but that had lasted for less than 50 years. Around the year 1800AD the monks were able to a revival.


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