Holy Monasteries

Coordinates: 38.479411, 25.976028

Monastery of Moundon

At the peaceful scenery of northwestern Chios, near the village of Diefha, there is one of the most important religious monuments of the island, the Monastery of Moundon. It is dedicated to St John the Baptist and its name probably comes from the location Mounda, near Volissos, where it was originally, before it was transferred to its present day, more remote location.

Tradition dates its foundation to the Byzantine period, but the first time it is mentioned in the sources is in 1574, and is related to its renovation by the priest-monk Iakovos Lagadiotis. It was a stauropegic monastery and flourished significantly from the 17th to the 19th century. As a matter of fact it evolved to the second most important monastic centre in Chios after Nea Moni. It possessed great property and rich library, it became the centre of theological studies and hosted important scholars and eminent people of Chios. It was destroyed in 1822 by the Turks, it was renovated and was destroyed again by the major earthquake in 1881, something that indicated the beginning of its decline and gradual abandonment.

From the monastery complex the catholicon survives in good condition. Around it, small chapels, cells and auxiliary buildings, which create a precinct, are mostly in ruins.

Architecturally the church belongs to the type of aisleless vaulted basilica and at its entrance they have added later a porch. According to the books of the monastery, in the beginning of the 17th century there were two unsuccessful attempts to decorate it. Finally icons were created in 1730, by the painter deacon Constantine from the village of Katarraktis, with the funding of the later abbot Iakovos Argentis. These wall paintings were destroyed in 1822 and those that survive to the present day have been made by an anonymous painter in 1849, as mentions the inscription over the entrance. Their style combines the folk post-Byzantine painting with western influences and some of the representations are unique, like the one of the crucified monk, with the title “the life of the true monk”.

Nowadays there are no monks at the monastery and celebrates on the 29th of August.


Contact phone:




August 29

Holy Metropolis:

Under the Supervision of:
EFA Chios

Diechia 82103

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