The Religious monuments of Crete


Saint George Church at Melissourgaki
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The church of Agios Georgios (Saint George) is located in the most central part of the village Melissourgaki in the province of Mylopotamos. Although externally it has undergone newer interventions mainly in 1902, inside it preserves some of the elements of the Venetian period, when it was built.

The area belonged to the noble Greek family Kallergis, who financed the foundation of churches of the Orthodox doctrine. Inside it bears frescoes from the end of the 14th century, which were covered with plaster and came to light in 1966. The murals are samples of exceptional art by a skillful painter, who follows the tradition of Constantinople.

The iconographic program contains the usual Gospel scenes with emphasis on the Christological cycle and the life of Saint George. The sanctuary hosts the scenes of Deesis and Melismus before the hierarchs, the Ascension and the scenes of the Myrrh-bearers, the oracle of Peter of Alexandria, the Stone and the Sacrifice of Abraham. On the south wall are the scenes of the Nativity, the Epiphany, the Parable of the Ten Virgins and scenes from the Second Coming. The north wall depicts the Betrayal of Judas, the Christ in Chains (Elkomenos), the Crucifixion, the Descent into Hades, the Touch of Thomas and the Last Judgment. Scenes of Saint George are also found.

Among the murals there are engravings by travellers of the past. Also the fresco of Elkomenos is a unique case in the hagiographic tradition, as Simon of Cyrene who carries the cross is depicted as a saint (with a halo).

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Additional Info

  • Location: Rethymnon Prefecture
  • Type: Church
  • Accessibility: Paved road

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