1833 – around Skiti Andreou: the garden

Andreou Serail aerail begin 1900Old picture of skiti Andreou 

On our first day of our 2015 Athos pilgrimage, 20th of September, we slept in Skiti Andreou, the former Russian convent, now inhabited by Greek monks. I remember walking past this large settlement for the first time in 1980: it was almost totally empty and deserted, no people, no sounds, a sence of decay and empytness, it gave me a creepy feeling. I did not dare to go in and have a look, a thing I really regret after so many years…..

But things changed in the meanwhile: nowadays the place is florishing and it is busy with people who live, work and pray there and with pilgrims who pay a visit. Buildings and churches are renovated and work is still in progress, although part of the buildings remains in ruin.

I decided to walk around the old buildings to see how it looked like from the outside. At first I ended up in the gardens.

I drew a plan of the buildings still in place. The plan is not professional, but usefull for this post.Andreou plan nr 1The plan of of Skiti Andreou or Serail. The entrance is at A, where our walk starts. Building B is the Athos school Athonias, E is the large church form 1900, J the smaller church that is renovated right now and G is the guesthouse. All these buildings will be shown to you in later posts (due to family circumstances I was not able publish frequently in the past weeks).

Let’s start with a picture of the entrance (A).DSCN6950 entrance (Large)The top of the roofs of the chapels and the church are recently being guilded. DSCN6950 Above the entrance: the Saint Andreou and the “All seeing Eye”.

DSCN6951 soccercourt (Large)Right from the entrance: the soccer/basketball court of the Athonias school – B (also see 1232).DSCN6980 Athonasias (Large)The Athonias schoolDSCN6974 garden 19 cells (Large)If you walk in the other direction from the gate (to the North) you will have to open a fence and soon after you will see these buildings on your right hand.DSCN6956 garden 1 (Large)A little bit futher: vines and a glasshouse in the garden of Andreou.

And then something special shows up, that I never seen before in any publication:DSCN6973 garden 18 well phiale (Large)Going down in the garden, a small phiale is hidden between the trees (C on the map)!DSCN6957 garden 2 phiale (Large)The small phiale under the trees.DSCN6959 garden 4 phiale 2 (Large)The phiale with decorative marble carvings and eight pillars, build in 1902. And when you turn around you will see this:DSCN6958 garden 3 well (Large)A well with fresh water running from the tap.DSCN6961 garden 6 miniature (Large)A miniature chapel with the well behind it.DSCN6960 garden 5 buildings (Large)DSCN6963 garden 8 ruins 2 (Large)Looking up from the well/phiale: the garden with the ruined part of Andreou and the top of the church.DSCN6962 garden 7 ruins (Large)A picture in the North direction: ruins and builiding D on the map.DSCN6972 garden17 ruins 3 (Large)Detail of a ruined house seen from the gardenDSCN6971 garden 16 house 4 (Large)Seen through the bushes: the top of a roof with a fine guilded cross.DSCN6968 garden 13 shed 2 (Large)A well kept house in the lower parts of the garden.DSCN6965 garden 10 cross (Large)View from the garden to a nearby kellion with fine blue roof.DSCN6969 garden 14 house 3 (Large)In detail.DSCN6966 garden 11 house 1 (Large)DSCN6967 garden 12 house 2 (Large)Two other kellions seen from the garden.DSCN6964 garden 9 garden shed (Large)Left from the wooden white cross three pictures above: a small shed in the garden, see the red O below.Andreou 1 pictures gardenkopieHere you can see where I took pictures in the garden. P is the philae, O the shed above. The following five pictures below are from the left side of the garden (see X).DSCN6977 garden 21 small church 1 (Large)Garden chapel at point X.DSCN6978 garden 22 small church 2 (Large)The chapel is dedicated to Agios Filaretos o Eleimon.DSCN6979 garden 23 church and waterhouse (Large)Next to the chapel lies a large water reservoir, under the sink roof (also spot X).DSCN6975 garden 20 pond (Large)The last photo of this post is taken on my way back to the main entrance at spot W: another water reservoir, carefully protected by a fence and nets.

Wim, 17/7

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3 Responses to 1833 – around Skiti Andreou: the garden

  1. gerard koolschijn says:

    Very interesting! Phiale and miniature chapel have an appearance much younger than 1902. I hope you also went down in the souterrain: pharmacy, shoemaker’s workshop, dentist’s room etc. and can show pictures of their actual state.

  2. Dana Sumar says:

    Dear Vim,
    Wonderful website, I really enjoy reading and browsing.
    I have a request not connected to this post.I found Barsky,s book on athoslbrary website and after perusing it, found out that the book was very poorly scanned, in a word travesty simply said.
    I wrote to Google books, and they kindly replied and sent the corrected version which was not any better, pages and images missing.Can you and your friend help by writing also to Google books.
    Presbytera Dana Sumar

    • athosweblog says:

      Dear Dana Sumar,

      I will try to find some time, but it is a busy life with work, family and friends (and moderate a weblog)! But first I will go for a summer holiday the next three weeks!

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