Church of Archangelos Michail

Pedoulas, Cyprus

The church of Archangel Michael is situated in a central area of the Troodos mountain range, in the valley of Marathasa, in the village of Pedoulas. In 1985 it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List which includes nine other painted Byzantine churches of the Troodos range. According to the dedicatory inscription above the north entrance, the church was built and decorated with frescoes in 1474, with the donation of priest Vasilios Chamados. The priest, accompanied by his wife and two daughters, is depicted above the dedicatory inscription, offering Archangel Michael a model of the church.

This church belongs to the typical single-aisled, timber-roof type of the Troodos region. The narthex, which extends to its south and west side, was used as a loft due to the small size of the church. The loft was used by the women, while only men entered the main church.

The church of Archangelos Michail is one of the few churches in Cyprus which preserves the name of the artist who decorated it. His name was Minas and he was a local painter who came from the area of Marathasa. Minas was a typical “naïve” painter with a conservative style, and followed the Byzantine tradition. However, he was aware of the artistic trends of his time and place which explains the influx of western elements in his work. During this period many contemporary churches were decorated with wall-paintings of the same style.

The wooden templon screen is worth mentioning, which also dates to 1474, with painted decoration consisting of coats-of-arms. It is one of the best-preserved examples of the kind in Cyprus. On the epistyle one can notice the painted coats-of-arms of the medieval Kingdom of Cyprus. Next to it is the double-headed eagle, the emblem of the Palaiologan dynasty, the last kings of the Byzantine Empire.

Only a few metres to the west of the church of Archangelos Michail, in a specially arranged room of the old primary school, a collection of portable icons and other objects of mainly religious art are kept. These come from the Byzantine churches of the village of Pedoulas, and are dated from the 13th to the 20th century.

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Address

E912, Pedoulas, Cyprus
See all sites in Pedoulas

Details

Founded: 1474
Category: Religious sites in Cyprus

More Information

www.mcw.gov.cy

Rating

4.9/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

fadi hrimat (20 months ago)
El Palomo (2 years ago)
Beautiful. It's a pity the museum was closed. Do not forget to leave an offer
Chris Barham (2 years ago)
It's a shame someone has loaded the wrong photo for this church. This is one of the UNESCO Painted Churches and is gorgeous. Ignore the big white painted church higher up the hill and instead look for the diminutive barn-like building lower down the hill. I hope Google fixes this error.
Colin Lothian (2 years ago)
The problem with this listing is that the Church in the main image is not the Church of Archangelos Michael but a nearby much larger church. The larger church is about 200 metres away from the Byzantine chapel which is down a lane and on the right hand side of the road. It is opposite the Byzantine museum. The UNESCO protected church is one of 10 in Greek Cyprus. A Wikipedia listing will give you the GIS references for all the churches and a further 56 of some note. Look up Byzantine Churches of Cyprus. It is possible to download the GPX coordinates directly into Viewranger open cycle map of Cyprus. The Cypriot Tourist Authority has a free publication available on Cultural and Spiritual Tours. A free l:75000 scale map is also available from the same source. Be careful when taking photographs here the wall paintings are very very old and flash could damage them. This is a conservation area as well as a working chapel so donations are welcome. A walking/ hiking route runs from just beyond the chapel . Details are on the sign board.
Alexander Potapov (2 years ago)
The church is gorgeous and stunning. The building itself is a landmark, so the average driver notices it with ease. I definitely admire the style for it is magnificent but simple.
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