Psača Monastery is an Orthodox Christian Monastery in the village of Psača, North Macedonia. It was built by Savastokrator Vlatko and his father Duke Paskač around 1354.

The monastery, dedicated to St Nicholas the Wonderworker, lies at the end of the village of Psača, 3 km from the Kumanovo – Kriva Palanka Road, in Rankovce Municipality. It belongs to the diocese of Osogovo-Kumanovo of the Macedonian Orthodox Church.

The monastery church, the only remaining part of the original monastic complex, was erected around 1354 by Sevastokrator Vlatko and his father Grand Duke Paskač, nobles of the Serbian Empire. In 1358, Vlatko donated his monastery to Chilandar, a Serbian monastery on Mount Athos.


The church is in the form of an elongated cross in a square with a narthex built at the same time. It originally had two domes (following the example of Lesnovo monastery), but the one above the nave collapsed at some point, leaving the central part of the church uncovered. In the 19th century the church was repaired but the missing dome was never rebuilt.

The outer decoration is in alternate layers of bricks and stone with several double bay windows and some rustic sculpture. The original dedication of the church was inscribed in stone above the entrance but was destroyed during the Bulgarian occupation of Macedonia in World War I since it mentioned Emperor Uroš and King Vukašin as Serbian rulers.


The fresco decoration in Psača ranks among the best of the mid-14th century. It was executed between 1366 and 1371. On the south wall of the narthex we see the endowers' composition with old Paskač and his wife Ozra paired with Vlatko, holding a model of the church, and his wife Vladislava. In front of them stand their children (grandchildren) Stefan, Uroš and Uglješa, while above them is the icon of St Nicholas to whom the church and monastery were dedicated.

Facing this composition the artists painted young Emperor Uroš and, on his left, his co-ruler and designated heir, King Vukašin of the Mrnjavčević family. These are the best representations of these important historical figures. Both the portraits of the rulers and those of the nobleman with their families are of great importance in studies of medieval costumes. Unfortunately, the inscriptions by the portraits were all destroyed by the Bulgarians during their occupation in World War I. The eyes of King Vukašin and Emperor Uroš were also scratched during the same period.

The depictions of saints are done in strong colors, with much attention paid to psychological portraying. There is a cycle on St Nicholas and a composition Death of Mother of God, while in the apse is the customary Communion of the Apostles with Church Fathers underneath it.



Your name


Founded: 1354
Category: Religious sites in North Macedonia

More Information


5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Emilija Dimitrovska (5 months ago)
Mike (8 months ago)
Serbian Orthodox Monastery built by Serbian Knez Paskac ??☦
Sergej Delov (8 months ago)
Exquisite experience
Миркa Смиренa (8 months ago)
If you have on earth, I would think that this is the place !!
Vasilka Dimitrovska (3 years ago)
St. Nicholas church (in the village Psacha) it is located only 3 km from the highway Kumanovo-Kriva Palanka in a beautiful surrounding. The small single nave temple was built around 1358 by the local landlord Vlatko and his father Pashach (thus the name Psacha monastery). The frescoes which are still preserved (including the patron portraits), were painted in the period of 1366-1371. The frescoes belong to the best work of Byzantine medieval painting.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Abbey of Saint-Étienne

The Abbey of Saint-Etienne, also known as Abbaye aux Hommes ('Men"s Abbey'), is a former monastery dedicated to Saint Stephen (Saint Étienne). It is considered, along with the neighbouring Abbaye aux Dames ('Ladies" Abbey'), to be one of the most notable Romanesque buildings in Normandy. Like all the major abbeys in Normandy, it was Benedictine.

Lanfranc, before being an Archbishop of Canterbury, was abbot of Saint-Etienne. Built in Caen stone during the 11th century, the two semi-completed churches stood for many decades in competition. An important feature added to both churches in about 1120 was the ribbed vault, used for the first time in France. The two abbey churches are considered forerunners of the Gothic architecture. The original Romanesque apse was replaced in 1166 by an early Gothic chevet, complete with rosette windows and flying buttresses. Nine towers and spires were added in the 13th century. The interior vaulting shows a similar progression, beginning with early sexpartite vaulting (using circular ribs) in the nave and progressing to quadipartite vaults (using pointed ribs) in the sanctuary.

The two monasteries were finally donated by William the Conqueror and his wife, Matilda of Flanders, as penalty for their marriage against the Pope"s ruling. William was buried here; Matilda was buried in the Abbaye aux Dames. Unfortunately William"s original tombstone of black marble, the same kind as Matilda"s in the Abbaye aux Dames, was destroyed by the Calvinist iconoclasts in the 16th century and his bones scattered.

As a consequence of the Wars of Religion, the high lantern tower in the middle of the church collapsed and was never rebuilt. The Benedictine abbey was suppressed during the French Revolution and the abbey church became a parish church. From 1804 to 1961, the abbey buildings accommodated a prestigious high school, the Lycée Malherbe. During the Normandy Landings in 1944, inhabitants of Caen found refuge in the church; on the rooftop there was a red cross, made with blood on a sheet, to show that it was a hospital (to avoid bombings).