Holy Church of Metamorphosis Sotiros Christianoupoleos

The temple dated at the beginning of 12th century, has an architectural terminology, an octagonal shape, a nathex and a three-part sanctuary. Its current form however, presents significant differences from the typical octagon type. There are evidence proving that at the site of the remarable church Metamorfosi Sotiros, lay the equally big ancient Greek temple of “Sotiros Dios”, a fact also supported by the dispersed architectural and ornamental parts dated in the Classical Hellenistic and Roman eras.

These, have been wall-mounted, embedded, or reused both in the grandiose Christian temple (see for example the altar with the Ionian and Corinthian rhythm ancient parts), and in the deserted chapel that served the villagers sfter the destructive earthquake of 1886. Given the fact that there were small cells of early Christians in the area, who, at the beginning, had to coexist harmoniously with the Greek Nationalist majority, who adhered to the scientific philosophic and religious values of Antiquity, the transition from one faith to the other, at least at this part of the Peloponnese, was smoother and bloodless in comparasion with other places (with the aid and the preservation of the word Sotir, meaning Savior).

 

This is definitely one of the largest Byzantine churches in Greece. Although the wall paintings have been destroyed almost completely, you will be compensated when you climb carefully the long wooden staircase to admire the large structure from the level of the large upper gallery. There, on the left, lie temporarily many cases with bones, probably of priests buried near the church… The ideal conclusion of this acquaintance with this great Christian monument, is the ascent by the large lateral, exterior staircase, to a small platform which offers views of the cupola, right in front and the majestic Aegaleo mountain in the backround.