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List of products by brand Esfigmenou

Esphigmenou Monastery


The monastery of Esphigmenou is located in the northwest of Mt. Athos, embedded in a small valley between two high grounds on the sea coast. It is less than an hour walk away from the Hilandar monastery.
The word "esphagmen" means murdered or butchered in Greek. 
This is the only Mt. Athos Greek monastery which has been proclaimed as zealot.
According to certain sources, the Greek emperor Theodosius II founded the monastery along with his sister Pulcheria in the 5th century.  The monastery was mentioned as early as 998 in a certain document from the Vatopedi monastery. Esphigmenou suffered greatly from barbarian invasions and fires, but managed to recover.  Saracens, Crusaders and pirates raided the monastery relentlessly. The great fire of 1533 did particular damage. 
In 1569, Esphigmenou was occupied by 51 monks, a record number for that period.
Its history has been marked by shifts of prosperous and dark periods. This is why the renewed monastery experienced decline in 1634 and later in 1705, managed to recover again.  In the late 18th century, the brotherhood was on the verge of collapse, but owing to the aid of the Cassandrian Archbishop Ignatius, the monastery was reconstructed in 1796. Esphigmenou became idiorrhythmic during the early 19th century.  

Among the monastery's greatest benefactors were John V Palaiologos, emperor Dušan the Mighty and despot Đorđe Branković. 

The catholicon is dedicated to the Ascension of Christ (occurring 40 days following Easter).  Among the temple's treasures are: THE MIRACULOUS ICON: БОГОРОДИЦА РУЖА НЕУВЕЊИВА, Икона у мозаику која приказује спаситеља из 13.века. pieces of the True Cross and relics of apostle James, son of Alphaeus, Mary Magdalene, St.  Athanasius, the Patriarch of Constantinople, James Intercisus, John Chrysostom, St. Panteleimon etc.

The sturdy monastery walls give it the appearance of a fortress, with the entrance to the courtyard guarded by two towers.   The catholicon is placed in the centre of the courtyard. There are 7 more chapels within the monastery. 

Esphigmenou monastery is home to the renowned skete Burazeri, founded by the Russian monk Neofit Burazer. Nowadays, an acclaimed icon-painting school is at its place.  

In the late 10th century, St. Anthony of Kiev occupied Esphigmenou monastery. He was the subsequent founder of the Kiev Pechersk Lavra and Russian monasticism.   His cell, placed atop a steep ledge above the monastery, still allures many visitors.  The library contains a rich collection of ancient manuscripts and books. 

It is noted in annals that Theoktistos, the abbot of Esphigmenou was elected as the Protos of Mt. Athos in 1037.

Nowadays, the monastery is ranked 18th in the Mt. Athos hierarchy. The 120 monks who occupy the monastery are renowned as a large and harmonious brotherhood.

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