Iaşi

The Galata Monastery

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Manastirea Galata
Location:
Iaşi

Objective:
Religious & cultural monuments

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If you are among the Romanian persons who planned that in this life they should visit the famous monasteries of Moldavia and Bucovina, than you must put the Galata Monastery of Iasi on your list.

 

If the name of “Galata” seems to you slightly atypical for a Romanian monastery, you must know that it has quite an interesting story. It comes from the Galata district of Constantinopol, where the rulers of Moldavia were staying when they were going to the Sultan to receive the ruling firman. In Turkish, this word means “gate”.

 

The monastery has been founded by Petru Schiopul(Peter the Lame), who, before, has erected other, called “Galata din vale”(Galata from the Valley), but which has fallen down at a short while after it has been finished, due to its location on an unfavourable land. From the “valley” monastery, the bell is the only thing that lasted, which now is located in the monastery courtyard to be admired by the tourist for its drawing with Aurochs Heads.

 

Why you should go to visit the Galata Monastery? Besides the occasion that your soul will be full of silence and faith, you must see also the exceptional architectonic achievement, being a synthesis of the Moldavian traditional elements and the Byzantine- Muntenian influences.

 

Practically, it has architectonic elements which you can not find in Moldavia till that moment: for example, the wall before the nave is missing, being replaced by three arcades sustained by columns. More, as new architecture elements, on this church, over the narthex there is a secondary steeple, and the apses are illuminated by three windows.

 

Unfortunately, we can no longer see the original painting of the church, because it has been burnt in a fire in the 17th century, being restored after decades.

 

Following the restoration works at the religious place, royal tombs have been found hidden, belonging to the two children of Petru Schiopul (Peter the Lame),but also the one of Maria Amirali,  his wife.

 

The history of the monastery can be easily considered atypical, at the beginning it was a royal residence.

 

Than, in the second half of the 19th century, in the monastery, a school with an original study object: raising and reproduction of silkworms, has been established. Subsequently, it was a military jail and only after 1989 it became a nuns monastery.

 

The nuns from here manufacture liturgical linens and master the embroidery art. So, if you will visit it, you shall see the art of working with the needle.

 

If all these arguments are not enough, than the fact that the area in which it is situated is quite a dream one, should definitely convince you.  The hill on which the monastery is situated has the form of a platform and allows a large prospective with possibility of observation on the old road along the valley of Bahlui, and also of the city of Iasi. This is the fact that has determined the founder to choose the place for a fortified monastery.

 

The road to the place is a testimony of many centuries of history and orthodox spirituality is simple, the monastery being situated in the South –West of the city of Iasi, N. 4 Manastirii Street, on the hill of Galata, at a height of 100 meters.

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