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Monastery of St. Peter and Paul description and photo - Bulgaria: Plovdiv. Detailed information about the attraction. Description, photos and a map showing the nearest significant objects.
Photo and description
The Monastery of Saints Peter and Paul is located at an altitude of 1650 meters above sea level in the Western Rhodopes, not far from the tourist center Byala Cherkva, 30 km south-west of the city of Plovdiv. It is the highest located monastery in Bulgaria.
The monastery is also one of the oldest in the country. It was founded in 1083 by a Byzantine military leader, Georgian by origin, Grigory Bakuriani. The Belocherkovsky monastery became one of the many small Orthodox monasteries built in those years near the village of Byala. The patrons of the monastery in the Middle Ages were the holy healers Damian and Kosma.
Probably, it was precisely due to its location high in the mountains that the monastery remained untouched during the Ottoman invasion at the end of the XIV century. About a century after the final conquest of the Balkans, the Ottoman Empire began a massive forced Islamization of the Bulgarian population. In the second half of the 17th century, in the valley of the Chepino River, the Belocherkovsky Monastery was completely destroyed, and the village of Byala was renamed Chepino.
Only in 1815 was the monastery church restored, and later - in 1883 - the monastery itself, named after Saints Peter and Paul. A new temple was erected on the ruins of the destroyed one. It is a single-nave cruciform building without a dome, with one apse and two conchs. It was not originally decorated with wall paintings. The church is completely built of white stone, hence the name of the nearby area - Belocherkovskaya. Initially, the temple was not painted, it was decorated with frescoes only in 1979-1981.
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Topic: Monastery of St. Peter and Paul description and photo - Bulgaria: Plovdiv.