Putna, included on Unesco's list of world heritage monuments, is the first of several monasteries founded by Stephen the Great.
The story says that Stephen went to the top of a hill and shot an arrow saying that wherever it fell the church would be built. A section of the tree trunk containing the arrow is still kept in the monastery museum. This monastic museum is famous for its precious objects from Stephen's time: embroideries, silver and lether objects, tapestries, manuscripts, paintings, sculptures.
At about 2 kms of Putna monastery there is Daniil Sihastrul's cave (he was known as Stephen confessor).
Humor monastery: Iconostasis
I was astonished by the beauty of the icons of Christ and Mary displayed on the iconostasis. having seen a lot of Byzantine icons I could tell that they respresent Byzantine religious art at its best!
Humore monastery: Martyrs' frescos
It is very usual in Orthodoxy to have frescos that display the martyrdom of saints. This despite sometimes may look very cruel, it is considered very inspiring for the faith.
Believers are educated in such way that a lot of people have suffered for the sake of their faith to Christ.
Humor monastery: Interior
The Humor church though smaller in scale it shares the same three-cusped plan proper to most other painted monasteries.
The interior is richly decorated by frescos and in the narthex, a painting displays Petru Rares and his family.
Humor monastery: Exterior frescos
Another famous exterior painting, is the Hymn to the Virgin, has been inspired by the poem written by Patriarch Serghei of Constantinople, and dedicated to the Virgin Mary, who is reputed to have saved the city during the attack of the Persians in 626.
Humor monastery: Exterior frescos (1)
Humor Monastery was among the first churches to be painted. Its frescos are due to Toma of Suceava and were performed in 1535. Humor is mainly painted in reddish brown with rich blues and greens.
The Last Judgement, placed on the wall is similar to the Voronet one, but, unfortunately, the Tree of Jesse has been effaced by erosion.
6km north of Gura Humorului, Humor’s monastery church consecrated to the Assumption of the Virgin was built in 1530 by Chancellor Teodor Bubuiog on the site of a monastic complex built before 1415.
Unlike other monasteries it has a wooden stockasde
The church though smaller in scale it share the same three-cusped plan proper to most other painted monasteries. The monastery houses a valuable collection of icons dating back to the 16th century. The monastery, is a nunnery and it was suppressed in 1786, and re-established only in 1990 and underwent several restoration works
Voronet north side exterior paintings
The north side has in some part been damaged by the weather but in the upper part one can see some interesting and rather unusual paintings from Old testament: It is the life of Adam and Eve in Paradise, their exile and the birth of their child!
The Last Judgement: Fine details (5)
On the right side there are some weird scenes with angles sounding trumps and to their response graves open (rise of dead) , wild animals (like an elephant) are approaching while beneath is a marine figure riding a dolphin holding a ship in one hand and surrounded by octapuses (additional pic)
The Last Judgement: Fine details (4)
A very interesting part is the the way to hell and the fight between the angles and demons over the souls. The lost souls in chains take their way to hell while others struggle in between. Every soul is judged and their good or bad acts are sized. The angels push the demons away while the last try anything to make the balance in favor of their side!
The Last Judgement: Fine details (3)
At the bottom left is the Garden of Eden, where Mother Mary supported by angles, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are welcoming a number of righteous souls (this noted by "photostefanon" the rounded flash of light around their head
The Last Judgement: Fine details (1)
At the far top is the portret of God (the Father) through an open window whose gates are hold by angels. He is surrounded surprisingly by zodiacs and unusual animals like a fishtailed unicorn (see additional pics)
Beneath is Christ sitting on a chair representing the "Toll Gates of the Air" accompanied by angels, Mother Mary, John the Baptist and a number of apostles and saints on either sides
Beneath is the Holy Spirit in the form of a white pidgeon.
From there on, is the fire leading to Hell where souls are judged for their sins
Voronet monastery: The Last Judgement
The most striking feature of Voronet monastery and most probably of all painted monasteries in Bucovina is the painting of Last Judgement located on the western wall which surprisingly is flat and unbroken as the entrance is located in the southern wall via an exonarthex.
The magnificent painting is really a masterpiece of Byzantine art both in terms of composition but in way of artistic achievement. Specially if you have an experienced eye in Byzantine art then you're simply left speachless and you can spend a long time there just admiring every single detail. Let's discover the fine details of this MUST SEE piece of art in this Oriental Sistine Chapel...
Voronet (pronounced as Voronets) Monastery dedicated to Saint George is one of the most famous painted monasteries of northern Moldavia listed in UNESCO's list of World Heritage sites. Due to well-preserved and rich frescos it is often called the "Sistine Chapel of the East". Another interesting feature is that the blue background color of its paintings took its place in the international language of art as "Voronets blue".
The Monastery is located near the town of Gura Humorului, south of Suceava.
This was built by King Stephen III of Moldavia in 1488, to commemorate the victory at Battle of Vaslui against the Turks. It was built on a triconch plan (chancel, a naos with tower, and a pronaos) and in 1547 an exonarthex was added to the west end of the church.
This Monastery is famous for the exterior fresco of the Last Judgment on the west wall (painted in 1547)
The tomb of the monastery's first abbot, Saint Daniil the Hermit, is found at the monastery.
It has, like Sucevita monastery, the aspect of a fortress, with imposing towers and high, thick walls. The exterior paintings are the best preserved of all the churches of Bucovina.
There can also be seen the "Pomme d'Or" prize awarded to Bucovina by the World Federation of Tourism Journalists and Writers in 1925.
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