Agathonos Monastery

agathonosIn a magical landscape,on the way to Lychnos and close to Ypati we find Agathonos Monastery, on a height of 553 metres on the slope of Mount Oiti. Built in the 14th-15th century it is a characteristic sample of the Byzantine Style/Architecture. According to tradition, there was a landslide in the old Monastery where Saint Agathonas was leading an ascetic life and the picture of Virgin Mary disappeared to be found in a sunlit cave. Just beside the cave, near the place where it is located today, the Saint built the Monastery sometime in the 14th or 15th century. Even today the inhabitants of the surrounding villages and especially those of the close-by village of Lychnos talk about the existence ‘in the old days’ of a monastery in the southwest part of the village in a near-by location called ‘Paliomanastiro’.However, the exact time cannot be specified. The Monastery after Saint Agathonas’ death has been named after his name by the friars. Following the disasters made to the Monastery by invaders in the district of Ypati, the Holy Agathonos Monastery has suffered a lot of damage. A major catastrophy occured in 1822 by Dramalis’ forces who set fire to the main church. Many heirlooms and honorable relics are saved into the Monastery. The holy heirlooms, that can be found in he Monastery Museum are of great variety and interest. Tenths of crosses, holy utensils, tabernacles, holy relics, holy icons, vestments, codes, books were collected from churches and destroyed monasteries of the area from the Abbot Germanos Dimakos and in this way they were saved from illicit antiquity dealers. The oldest book in the library was written by Ioustinos, a Philosopher and Martyr, dating back to 1551, It was offered by the Bishop Filotheos of Zitouni to the Monastery. In many service books of the Monastery we can find interesting memories of Abbots and Friars, which are of great historic value for the life of the Monastery and the surrounding villages.  During the time of the 1821 revolution the Monastery offered major services.  For the success of the revolution the Monastery offered the friars themselves who fought along with the Patratzikioti Chief in Arms, Mitsos Kontogiannis. Regular gatherings were performed in the Monastery whose Abbot was the Archimandrite Germanos Dimakos, the legendary fighter of the Resistance, ‘Minister Impatient’ as he was called and a close collaborator of Aris Velouchiotis. In our days, in the premises of the Monastery the visitor can enjoy the nature and experience the religious feeling as well as feel the effort that was made throughout time for the protection and preservation of the National consciousness. The visitor can admire the unique habitat with the peacocks, the pheasants, the partridges, the ducks and other bird species. He/She has the pleasure to see deer, pheasants, wild sheep and partridges in a special space of approximately 1.200 acres, that houses the Kennel of Agathonos Monastery. The visitor also has the chance to visit the Natural History Museum, in which the most important species of the fauna and flora of Oiti National Park are exhibited. Different schools operated in the Monastery, hieratic, agricultural and sylvan. A wild animal kennel  and a Museum of the Natural History of Oiti (1953) operates within the premises. On 6th and 15th August there is a yearly celebration.

Historical description-Flashback:
Time periods: Ottoman era, Newer modern Greece
Boundaries: Municipality of Lamia – Municipal Section of Ypati, Local Community of Ypati
Directions: It is built in the foot of Oiti mountain in a 553m altitude and it is located 7 kilometres west of Ypati. We can follow two routes starting fro Ypati Spa (Spring). In the first case we follow the Ypati Baths – Argirohori-Ypati-Kapnohori route. In the second case we follow the Ypati Baths – Ladikou – Vasilika – Syka route.
Transportation: Intercity bus, car, taxi
Parking: Parking is available near Museum entrance
Work hours: From sunrise to sunset
Authority: 24th Byzantine Antiquities
General information: Phone: 22310- 95218
Area: Ypati
Accessibility for the disabled: Yes
Cost: Free entrance

 

Church of Panagia Archodiki

archontikiJust below the Castle of Lamia the Church of Panagia Archodiki was built. It is the second (after the Castle) archaeologically significant monument. It took its name by the prominent residents and lords of Lamia that were attending services there in the past.

It was built just over the older church that was destroyed by a fire. It was built in 1760 and was crafted in 1762. The walls of the Church are simple.

The narthex was added later that is why it has no frescos, like the main Church. Inside the Church is painted with four series of subjects-zones. The first shows the martyrs of the Old and the New Testament. The second narrates the Holy Basin to the Resurrection. The third shows 30 Saints and the Fourth full-body name and women Saints.

Historical description-Flashback:
Time periods: Ottoman era
Boundaries: Municipality of Lamia – Municipal Section of Lamia, Local Community of Lamia
Directions: There are public means of transportation (KTEL coach, National Railway) to the city centre where you can go to the Castle of Lamia by car or taxi which is near Panagia Archontiki, on the eastward path.
Transportation: Bus to the city center and then by car or TAXI
Parking: Parking not available
Work hours:Without Restrictions
Authority: 24th Byzantine Antiquities
General informations:Holy Bishorpic of Fthiotida Phone: 22310-5055

 

Damasta Monastery

damastaThe female Damasta Monastery, is dedicated to the Birth of the Virgin Mary, is located in the municipal prefecture of Damasta in a magical landscape. Its early history is not known. The catholic (main church of the monastery) dates back to the 11th century with religious icons dating back to 1818. An epigraph over the lintel of the central gate informs the visitor that the Church was erected with the cost being born by Captain Ioannis Diovouniotis. The Monastery has suffered a lot of destructions with the most significant being the one inflicted in 1821 when the Turks burnt it. The valuable relics and its library were destroyed. The reconstruction of the Monastery should be attributed to offers made by devout Christians. It celebrates on September,8. A version calls for its name which is ‘Damasta’ to derive from the city Damascus, where the Holy Icon of the Virgin Mary came from.

Historical description-Flashback:
Time periods: Byzantine era, Ottoman era
Boundaries: Municipality of Lamia – Municipal Section of Gorgopotamos, Local Community of Gorgopotamos
Directions: We take the Lamia-Amfissa National Highway, we get pass Bralos junction, a few metres later we turn left.
Transportation: Intercity bus, car, taxi
Parking: Parking is available near the monastery entrance
Work hours: From sunrise to sunset
Authority: 24th Byzantine Antiquities
General informations: Phone: 22310- 82586
Area: Damasta
Accessibility for the disabled: Yes
Cost: Free entrance