Saint Catherine's Monastery, Mount Sinai
Overview
 
Saint Catherine's Monastery (Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

: Moni tes Hagias Aikaterines) lies on the Sinai Peninsula
Sinai Peninsula
The Sinai Peninsula or Sinai is a triangular peninsula in Egypt about in area. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north, and the Red Sea to the south, and is the only part of Egyptian territory located in Asia as opposed to Africa, effectively serving as a land bridge between two...

, at the mouth of a gorge at the foot of Mount Sinai
Mount Sinai
Mount Sinai , also known as Mount Horeb, Mount Musa, Gabal Musa , Jabal Musa meaning "Moses' Mountain", is a mountain near Saint Catherine in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt. A mountain called Mount Sinai is mentioned many times in the Book of Exodus in the Torah and the Bible as well as the Quran...

 in the city of Saint Catherine
Saint Catherine, Egypt
Saint Catherine is the capital city of Saint Katherine Markaz and a natural protectorate in the South Sinai Governorate in Sinai in Egypt. It is located at the outskirts of El-Tur Mountains Province at an elevation of 1586 m , 120 km away from Nuweiba, at the foot of Mount Sinai and the...

 in Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

's South Sinai Governorate. The monastery is Orthodox
Eastern Orthodox Church
The Orthodox Church, officially called the Orthodox Catholic Church and commonly referred to as the Eastern Orthodox Church, is the second largest Christian denomination in the world, with an estimated 300 million adherents mainly in the countries of Belarus, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece,...

 and is a UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site
A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a place that is listed by the UNESCO as of special cultural or physical significance...

. According to the UNESCO report (60100 ha / Ref: 954), this monastery is one of the oldest working Christian monasteries in the world together with the Monastery of Saint Anthony
Monastery of Saint Anthony
The Monastery of Saint Anthony is a Coptic Orthodox monastery standing in an oasis in the Eastern Desert of Egypt, in the southern part of the Suez Governorate. Hidden deep in the Red Sea mountains, it is located southeast of Cairo. It is one of the oldest monasteries in the world, together with...

, situated across the Red Sea
Red Sea
The Red Sea is a seawater inlet of the Indian Ocean, lying between Africa and Asia. The connection to the ocean is in the south through the Bab el Mandeb strait and the Gulf of Aden. In the north, there is the Sinai Peninsula, the Gulf of Aqaba, and the Gulf of Suez...

 in the desert
Desert
A desert is a landscape or region that receives an extremely low amount of precipitation, less than enough to support growth of most plants. Most deserts have an average annual precipitation of less than...

 south of Cairo
Cairo
Cairo , is the capital of Egypt and the largest city in the Arab world and Africa, and the 16th largest metropolitan area in the world. Nicknamed "The City of a Thousand Minarets" for its preponderance of Islamic architecture, Cairo has long been a centre of the region's political and cultural life...

, which also lays claim to that title.
The oldest record of monastic life at Sinai comes from the travel journal written in Latin by a woman named Egeria about 381-384.
Encyclopedia
Saint Catherine's Monastery (Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

: Moni tes Hagias Aikaterines) lies on the Sinai Peninsula
Sinai Peninsula
The Sinai Peninsula or Sinai is a triangular peninsula in Egypt about in area. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north, and the Red Sea to the south, and is the only part of Egyptian territory located in Asia as opposed to Africa, effectively serving as a land bridge between two...

, at the mouth of a gorge at the foot of Mount Sinai
Mount Sinai
Mount Sinai , also known as Mount Horeb, Mount Musa, Gabal Musa , Jabal Musa meaning "Moses' Mountain", is a mountain near Saint Catherine in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt. A mountain called Mount Sinai is mentioned many times in the Book of Exodus in the Torah and the Bible as well as the Quran...

 in the city of Saint Catherine
Saint Catherine, Egypt
Saint Catherine is the capital city of Saint Katherine Markaz and a natural protectorate in the South Sinai Governorate in Sinai in Egypt. It is located at the outskirts of El-Tur Mountains Province at an elevation of 1586 m , 120 km away from Nuweiba, at the foot of Mount Sinai and the...

 in Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

's South Sinai Governorate. The monastery is Orthodox
Eastern Orthodox Church
The Orthodox Church, officially called the Orthodox Catholic Church and commonly referred to as the Eastern Orthodox Church, is the second largest Christian denomination in the world, with an estimated 300 million adherents mainly in the countries of Belarus, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece,...

 and is a UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site
A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a place that is listed by the UNESCO as of special cultural or physical significance...

. According to the UNESCO report (60100 ha / Ref: 954), this monastery is one of the oldest working Christian monasteries in the world together with the Monastery of Saint Anthony
Monastery of Saint Anthony
The Monastery of Saint Anthony is a Coptic Orthodox monastery standing in an oasis in the Eastern Desert of Egypt, in the southern part of the Suez Governorate. Hidden deep in the Red Sea mountains, it is located southeast of Cairo. It is one of the oldest monasteries in the world, together with...

, situated across the Red Sea
Red Sea
The Red Sea is a seawater inlet of the Indian Ocean, lying between Africa and Asia. The connection to the ocean is in the south through the Bab el Mandeb strait and the Gulf of Aden. In the north, there is the Sinai Peninsula, the Gulf of Aqaba, and the Gulf of Suez...

 in the desert
Desert
A desert is a landscape or region that receives an extremely low amount of precipitation, less than enough to support growth of most plants. Most deserts have an average annual precipitation of less than...

 south of Cairo
Cairo
Cairo , is the capital of Egypt and the largest city in the Arab world and Africa, and the 16th largest metropolitan area in the world. Nicknamed "The City of a Thousand Minarets" for its preponderance of Islamic architecture, Cairo has long been a centre of the region's political and cultural life...

, which also lays claim to that title.

History

The oldest record of monastic life at Sinai comes from the travel journal written in Latin by a woman named Egeria about 381-384. She visited many places around the Holy Land and Mount Sinai, where, according to the Hebrew Bible
Hebrew Bible
The Hebrew Bible is a term used by biblical scholars outside of Judaism to refer to the Tanakh , a canonical collection of Jewish texts, and the common textual antecedent of the several canonical editions of the Christian Old Testament...

, Moses
Moses
Moses was, according to the Hebrew Bible and Qur'an, a religious leader, lawgiver and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed...

 received the Ten Commandments
Ten Commandments
The Ten Commandments, also known as the Decalogue , are a set of biblical principles relating to ethics and worship, which play a fundamental role in Judaism and most forms of Christianity. They include instructions to worship only God and to keep the Sabbath, and prohibitions against idolatry,...

 from God
God
God is the English name given to a singular being in theistic and deistic religions who is either the sole deity in monotheism, or a single deity in polytheism....

.

The monastery was built by order of Emperor Justinian I
Justinian I
Justinian I ; , ; 483– 13 or 14 November 565), commonly known as Justinian the Great, was Byzantine Emperor from 527 to 565. During his reign, Justinian sought to revive the Empire's greatness and reconquer the lost western half of the classical Roman Empire.One of the most important figures of...

 (reigned 527-565), enclosing the Chapel of the Burning Bush
Burning bush
The burning bush is an object described by the Book of Exodus as being located on Mount Sinai; according to the narrative, the bush was on fire, but was not consumed by the flames, hence the name...

 ordered to be built by Helena
Helena of Constantinople
Saint Helena also known as Saint Helen, Helena Augusta or Helena of Constantinople was the consort of Emperor Constantius, and the mother of Emperor Constantine I...

, the mother of Constantine I, at the site where Moses
Moses
Moses was, according to the Hebrew Bible and Qur'an, a religious leader, lawgiver and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed...

 is supposed to have seen the burning bush
Burning bush
The burning bush is an object described by the Book of Exodus as being located on Mount Sinai; according to the narrative, the bush was on fire, but was not consumed by the flames, hence the name...

; the living bush on the grounds is purportedly the original. It is also referred to as "St. Helen's Chapel." The site is sacred to Judaism
Judaism
Judaism ) is the "religion, philosophy, and way of life" of the Jewish people...

, Christianity
Christianity
Christianity is a monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in canonical gospels and other New Testament writings...

 and Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

.

Though it is commonly known as Saint Catherine's, the full, official name of the monastery is, The Sacred and Imperial Monastery of the God-Trodden Mount of Sinai, and the patronal feast of the monastery is the Transfiguration
Transfiguration of Jesus
The Transfiguration of Jesus is an event reported in the New Testament in which Jesus is transfigured and becomes radiant upon a mountain. The Synoptic Gospels describe it, and 2 Peter 1:16-18 refers to it....

. The site was associated with Saint Catherine of Alexandria
Catherine of Alexandria
Saint Catherine of Alexandria, also known as Saint Catherine of the Wheel and The Great Martyr Saint Catherine is, according to tradition, a Christian saint and virgin, who was martyred in the early 4th century at the hands of the pagan emperor Maxentius...

 (whose relics were purported to have been miraculously transported there by angels) and it became a favorite site of pilgrimage
Pilgrimage
A pilgrimage is a journey or search of great moral or spiritual significance. Typically, it is a journey to a shrine or other location of importance to a person's beliefs and faith...

.

According to tradition, Catherine of Alexandria was a Christian martyr
Martyr
A martyr is somebody who suffers persecution and death for refusing to renounce, or accept, a belief or cause, usually religious.-Meaning:...

 initially sentenced to death on the wheel
Breaking wheel
The breaking wheel, also known as the Catherine wheel or simply the wheel, was a torture device used for capital punishment in the Middle Ages and early modern times for public execution by bludgeoning to death...

. However, when this failed to kill her, she was beheaded. According to tradition, angels took her remains to Mount Sinai. Around the year 800
800
Year 800 was a leap year starting on Wednesday of the Julian calendar. It was around this time that the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years, so from this time on, the years began being known as 800 and onwards.- Europe :* December 25 - Pope Leo III...

, monks from the Sinai Monastery found her remains.
The monastery possesses copies of an important historical document, the Achtiname, in which Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

 is claimed to have bestowed his protection upon the monastery.

A Fatimid
Fatimid
The Fatimid Islamic Caliphate or al-Fāṭimiyyūn was a Berber Shia Muslim caliphate first centered in Tunisia and later in Egypt that ruled over varying areas of the Maghreb, Sudan, Sicily, the Levant, and Hijaz from 5 January 909 to 1171.The caliphate was ruled by the Fatimids, who established the...

 mosque
Mosque
A mosque is a place of worship for followers of Islam. The word is likely to have entered the English language through French , from Portuguese , from Spanish , and from Berber , ultimately originating in — . The Arabic word masjid literally means a place of prostration...

 was built within the walls of the monastery, but it has never been used since it is not correctly oriented towards Mecca
Mecca
Mecca is a city in the Hijaz and the capital of Makkah province in Saudi Arabia. The city is located inland from Jeddah in a narrow valley at a height of above sea level...

.

During the seventh century, the isolated Christian anchorite
Anchorite
Anchorite denotes someone who, for religious reasons, withdraws from secular society so as to be able to lead an intensely prayer-oriented, ascetic, and—circumstances permitting—Eucharist-focused life...

s of the Sinai were eliminated: only the fortified monastery remained. The monastery is still surrounded by the massive fortifications that have preserved it. Until the twentieth century, access was through a door high in the outer walls. From the time of the First Crusade
First Crusade
The First Crusade was a military expedition by Western Christianity to regain the Holy Lands taken in the Muslim conquest of the Levant, ultimately resulting in the recapture of Jerusalem...

, the presence of Crusaders in the Sinai until 1270 spurred the interest of European Christians and increased the number of intrepid pilgrims who visited the monastery. The monastery was supported by its dependencies in Egypt, Palestine, Syria, Crete, Cyprus and Constantinople.

The monastery is depicted as a scene on the back panel of the Modena Triptych
Modena Triptych
The Modena Triptych is 1568 triptych by the artist El Greco, who was also known as Doménikos Theotokópoulos. It is part of the permanent collection at the Historical Museum of Crete....

 by El Greco
El Greco
El Greco was a painter, sculptor and architect of the Spanish Renaissance. "El Greco" was a nickname, a reference to his ethnic Greek origin, and the artist normally signed his paintings with his full birth name in Greek letters, Δομήνικος Θεοτοκόπουλος .El Greco was born on Crete, which was at...

.

It is seen in the PBS documentary, Walking the Bible with Bruce Feiler.

About the monastery

The monastery
Monastery
Monastery denotes the building, or complex of buildings, that houses a room reserved for prayer as well as the domestic quarters and workplace of monastics, whether monks or nuns, and whether living in community or alone .Monasteries may vary greatly in size – a small dwelling accommodating only...

 library preserves the second largest collection of early codices
Codex
A codex is a book in the format used for modern books, with multiple quires or gatherings typically bound together and given a cover.Developed by the Romans from wooden writing tablets, its gradual replacement...

 and manuscripts in the world, outnumbered only by the Vatican Library
Vatican Library
The Vatican Library is the library of the Holy See, currently located in Vatican City. It is one of the oldest libraries in the world and contains one of the most significant collections of historical texts. Formally established in 1475, though in fact much older, it has 75,000 codices from...

. Its strength lies in Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

, Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

, Armenian
Armenian language
The Armenian language is an Indo-European language spoken by the Armenian people. It is the official language of the Republic of Armenia as well as in the region of Nagorno-Karabakh. The language is also widely spoken by Armenian communities in the Armenian diaspora...

, Hebrew
Hebrew language
Hebrew is a Semitic language of the Afroasiatic language family. Culturally, is it considered by Jews and other religious groups as the language of the Jewish people, though other Jewish languages had originated among diaspora Jews, and the Hebrew language is also used by non-Jewish groups, such...

, Georgian
Georgian language
Georgian is the native language of the Georgians and the official language of Georgia, a country in the Caucasus.Georgian is the primary language of about 4 million people in Georgia itself, and of another 500,000 abroad...

, Syriac and old Udi
Udi language
The Udi language, spoken by the Udi people, is a member of the Lezgic branch of the Northeast Caucasian language family. It is believed an earlier form of it was the main language of Caucasian Albania, which stretched from south Dagestan to current day Azerbaijan.The language is spoken by about...

 texts. The Codex Sinaiticus
Codex Sinaiticus
Codex Sinaiticus is one of the four great uncial codices, an ancient, handwritten copy of the Greek Bible. It is an Alexandrian text-type manuscript written in the 4th century in uncial letters on parchment. Current scholarship considers the Codex Sinaiticus to be one of the best Greek texts of...

, now in the British Library
British Library
The British Library is the national library of the United Kingdom, and is the world's largest library in terms of total number of items. The library is a major research library, holding over 150 million items from every country in the world, in virtually all known languages and in many formats,...

, left the monastery in the 19th century for Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

, in circumstances that are now disputed.
The complex houses irreplaceable works of art: mosaics, the best collection of early icon
Icon
An icon is a religious work of art, most commonly a painting, from Eastern Christianity and in certain Eastern Catholic churches...

s in the world, many in encaustic
Encaustic painting
Encaustic painting, also known as hot wax painting, involves using heated beeswax to which colored pigments are added. The liquid/paste is then applied to a surface—usually prepared wood, though canvas and other materials are often used...

, as well as liturgical objects, chalices and reliquaries, and church buildings. The large icon collection begins with a few dating to the 5th (possibly) and 6th centuries, which are unique survivals, the monastery having been untouched by Byzantine iconoclasm
Iconoclasm (Byzantine)
The Byzantine Iconoclasm encompasses two periods in the history of the Byzantine Empire when Emperors, backed by imperially-appointed leaders and councils of the Orthodox Church imposed a ban on religious images or icons. The "First Iconoclasm", as it is sometimes called, lasted between about 730...

, and never sacked. The oldest icon on an Old Testament
Old Testament
The Old Testament, of which Christians hold different views, is a Christian term for the religious writings of ancient Israel held sacred and inspired by Christians which overlaps with the 24-book canon of the Masoretic Text of Judaism...

 theme is also preserved there. A project to catalogue the collections has been ongoing since the 1960s.

The monastery, along with several dependencies in the area, constitute the entire Orthodox Church of Mount Sinai, which is headed by an archbishop
Archbishop
An archbishop is a bishop of higher rank, but not of higher sacramental order above that of the three orders of deacon, priest , and bishop...

, who is also the abbot
Abbot
The word abbot, meaning father, is a title given to the head of a monastery in various traditions, including Christianity. The office may also be given as an honorary title to a clergyman who is not actually the head of a monastery...

 of the monastery. The exact administrative status of the church within Eastern Orthodoxy is ambiguous: by some, including the church itself, it is considered autocephalous
Autocephaly
Autocephaly , in hierarchical Christian churches and especially Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox churches, is the status of a hierarchical church whose head bishop does not report to any higher-ranking bishop...

, by others an autonomous church under the jurisdiction of the Greek Orthodox Church of Jerusalem. The archbishop is traditionally consecrated
Consecration
Consecration is the solemn dedication to a special purpose or service, usually religious. The word "consecration" literally means "to associate with the sacred". Persons, places, or things can be consecrated, and the term is used in various ways by different groups...

 by the Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem
Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem
The Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem is the head bishop of the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem, ranking fourth of nine Patriarchs in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Since 2005, the Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem has been Theophilos III...

; in recent centuries he has usually resided in Cairo
Cairo
Cairo , is the capital of Egypt and the largest city in the Arab world and Africa, and the 16th largest metropolitan area in the world. Nicknamed "The City of a Thousand Minarets" for its preponderance of Islamic architecture, Cairo has long been a centre of the region's political and cultural life...

. During the period of the Crusades, marked by bitterness between the Orthodox and Catholic churches, the monastery was patronized by both the Byzantine Emperors and the rulers of the Kingdom of Jerusalem
Kingdom of Jerusalem
The Kingdom of Jerusalem was a Catholic kingdom established in the Levant in 1099 after the First Crusade. The kingdom lasted nearly two hundred years, from 1099 until 1291 when the last remaining possession, Acre, was destroyed by the Mamluks, but its history is divided into two distinct periods....

, and their respective elites. The monastery was an important centre for the development of the hybrid style of Crusader art, and still retains over 120 icon
Icon
An icon is a religious work of art, most commonly a painting, from Eastern Christianity and in certain Eastern Catholic churches...

s created in the style, by far the largest collection in existence. Many were evidently created by Latins, probably monks, based in or around the monastery in the 13th century. Prior to September 1, 2009, a previously unseen fragment of Codex Sinaiticus
Codex Sinaiticus
Codex Sinaiticus is one of the four great uncial codices, an ancient, handwritten copy of the Greek Bible. It is an Alexandrian text-type manuscript written in the 4th century in uncial letters on parchment. Current scholarship considers the Codex Sinaiticus to be one of the best Greek texts of...

 was discovered in the monastery's library.

See also

  • Saint Catherine, Egypt
    Saint Catherine, Egypt
    Saint Catherine is the capital city of Saint Katherine Markaz and a natural protectorate in the South Sinai Governorate in Sinai in Egypt. It is located at the outskirts of El-Tur Mountains Province at an elevation of 1586 m , 120 km away from Nuweiba, at the foot of Mount Sinai and the...

  • Apology of Aristides
    Apology of Aristides
    The Apology of Aristides was written by the early Christian writer Aristides . Until 1878, our knowledge of Aristides was confined to some references in works by Eusebius of Caesarea and Saint Jerome. Eusebius said that he was an Athenian philosopher and that Aristides and another apologist,...

  • Archbishop of Mount Sinai and Raithu
    Archbishop of Mount Sinai and Raithu
    The following is a list of Orthodox Archbishops of Mount Sinai and Raithu. It is an autocephalous Julian Calendar Orthodox Church....

  • Greek Orthodox Church
    Greek Orthodox Church
    The Greek Orthodox Church is the body of several churches within the larger communion of Eastern Orthodox Christianity sharing a common cultural tradition whose liturgy is also traditionally conducted in Koine Greek, the original language of the New Testament...

  • Charnel House
    Charnel house
    A charnel house is a vault or building where human skeletal remains are stored. They are often built near churches for depositing bones that are unearthed while digging graves...

  • Christ Pantocrator
    Christ Pantocrator
    In Christian iconography, Christ Pantokrator refers to a specific depiction of Christ. Pantocrator or Pantokrator is a translation of one of many Names of God in Judaism...

  • Codex Sinaiticus
    Codex Sinaiticus
    Codex Sinaiticus is one of the four great uncial codices, an ancient, handwritten copy of the Greek Bible. It is an Alexandrian text-type manuscript written in the 4th century in uncial letters on parchment. Current scholarship considers the Codex Sinaiticus to be one of the best Greek texts of...

  • Eastern Christianity
    Eastern Christianity
    Eastern Christianity comprises the Christian traditions and churches that developed in the Balkans, Eastern Europe, Asia Minor, the Middle East, Northeastern Africa, India and parts of the Far East over several centuries of religious antiquity. The term is generally used in Western Christianity to...

  • Gregory of Sinai
    Gregory of Sinai
    Saint Gregory of Sinai was instrumental in the emergence of "technical" Hesychasm on Athos in the early 14th century....

  • Hermit
    Hermit
    A hermit is a person who lives, to some degree, in seclusion from society.In Christianity, the term was originally applied to a Christian who lives the eremitic life out of a religious conviction, namely the Desert Theology of the Old Testament .In the...

  • Ladder of Divine Ascent
  • Macarius of Egypt
    Macarius of Egypt
    Macarius of Egypt was an Egyptian Christian monk and hermit. He is also known as Macarius the Elder, Macarius the Great and The Lamp of the Desert.-Life:...

  • Mary of Egypt
    Mary of Egypt
    Mary of Egypt is revered as the patron saint of penitents, most particularly in the Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, and Eastern Catholic churches, as well as in the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches.-Life:...

  • Monastery of Saint Anthony
    Monastery of Saint Anthony
    The Monastery of Saint Anthony is a Coptic Orthodox monastery standing in an oasis in the Eastern Desert of Egypt, in the southern part of the Suez Governorate. Hidden deep in the Red Sea mountains, it is located southeast of Cairo. It is one of the oldest monasteries in the world, together with...

    , the oldest monastery
  • Oldest churches in the world
    Oldest churches in the world
    This article lists the oldest church buildings.The oldest extant buildings identified as early sites of Christian worship date to the 3rd century....

  • Poustinia
    Poustinia
    A poustinia is a small sparsely furnished cabin or room where one goes to pray and fast alone in the presence of God. The word poustinia has its origin in the Russian word for desert...

  • Saint John Climacus
  • Sümela Monastery
    Sumela Monastery
    The Sümela Monastery , , i.e. monastery of the Panaghia at Melá mountain) is a Greek Orthodox monastery, standing at the foot of a steep cliff facing the Altındere valley, in the region of Maçka in Trabzon Province, modern Turkey...

  • Syriac Sinaiticus
  • Kurt Weitzmann
    Kurt Weitzmann
    Kurt Weitzmann was born in Klein Almerode Germany on May 7, 1904 and died in Princeton, New Jersey on June 7, 1993. He was a highly influential art historian who studied Byzantine and medieval art. He attended the universities of Münster, Würzburg and Vienna before moving to Princeton in 1935, due...


External links

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