Church of St Mary Kastrianon

The Monastery of St Mary Kastrianou is situated inside the Old Pyli settlement. The Monastery was founded by the monk Christodoulos Latrinos when he came to Kos after leaving Strovillo in Asia Minor. It is dedicated to St Mary and parishioners hold a big celebration to this day on the 2nd of February. The church was raised in three phases: the main part of the Church was built by Christodoulou around 1080 AD, in the Byzantine period an antenave was added with a flat roof and later on an arch in the western area of the chamber. Excavations within the church revealed tombs dating back to the 16th century. There are a number of exquisite murals. The oldest ones depict saints and the Gensesis of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and date back to the 12th century. St Mary holding the infant with angels also dates back to the 12th century although in the later part and is situated in the south east area. The rest of the murals which constitute the largest part of the surviving murals date back to the 16th century and are probably the work of the artist Nikolaou who also painted murals in the Castle of Kalymnos.
Unfortunately the Monastery is usually locked and rarely accessible to the public. To see the interior one would probably have to join the festivities on the 2nd of February...

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