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Subject Religion » Christianity

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631232032.2001.x


The monastery of the patriarchate of Peć lies on the left bank of the Bistrica in the kosovo region. The Holy Apostles church, the oldest in the complex of four, was founded c .1230 by Archbishop Arsenije. Its fresco programme, initiated by sava of Serbia, evokes the events in the Cenacle in Jerusalem. Seat of the autocephalous archbishop from c .1280, and of the patriarch from 1346, it is considered ‘the mother of churches' in serbia . Archbishop Nikodim founded the church of St Demetrios (1320); the patron of the churches of the Virgin and of St Nicholas (1330–7) was Archbishop Danilo II, the foremost Serbian scholar of his day. He added a large narthex linking the three larger churches. A bell-tower, now demolished, is seen in a wall painting showing Danilo in prayer before the Virgin, holding the model of his donation. Arsenije, Nikodim, Danilo and many other hierarchs of the see are buried in the churches. The vast fresco decor at Peć, rich in iconographic themes and spanning four centuries, shows a variety of artistic skills, often outstanding. Extinct after the fall of Serbia to the ottomans , the patriarchate of Peć was re-established in 1557, abolished in 1766 and established again, conjoined with the patriarchate of Belgrade, in 1920. Throughout its history the monastery remained a centre of learning and writing. Caves in the surrounding hills sheltered recluses, ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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