1549 – Esfigmenou: the “Orthodoxy or Death” banner

The controversy of the Esfigmenou zelotes has been a long standing issue on Athos, which the monks of the monastery want to share with the rest of the world by showing a large banner of the sea site wall (and of course on their own website).

In 1997 I had the opportunity to shoot this picture of the banner: “Orthodoxia I thanatos”.026 Athos - Esfigmenou Orthodoxie of dood 1997Esfigmenou in 1997

When we arrived at Esfigmenou 16 years later, in September 2013, the first thing I noticed was the old banner lying next to the northern wall.DSCN2299 (Large)

The banner had been replaced by a modern version, with a better grafic design:DSCN2316 (Large)

DSCN2323 (Large) (2)Later it showed out that the banner was hanging just below our beds in the guesthouse of the monastery.

DSCN2396 (Large)View from the the bedroom in the archondarion of the monastery.

DSCN2394 (Large)The bedroom in the guesthouse, just beneath te banner

Wim, 19/5

NB. the breaking news for me: I decided to visit Athos once more (my 10th visit!), together with a good friend of mine. Today (21 May) we got a permit for a visit on the 1st of September 2014!!

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1 Response to 1549 – Esfigmenou: the “Orthodoxy or Death” banner

  1. Robert Borneman says:

    Thank you for these images. I was in Esphigmenou in 1989 and saw the banner then. In current images (since 2013, I believe) the banner is not visible. I had taken pictures of it then, but have since lost my archive of photos. I had written about the banner in my journal but could not find photos to prove what I had recalled. Thank you for these images, which confirm that memory for me.

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