Photographer's Note

Manasija (Serbian Cyrillic: Манасија), also known as Resava (Serbian Cyrillic: Ресава), is a Serb Orthodox monastery near Despotovac, Serbia, founded by Despot Stefan Lazarević between 1407 and 1418. It is one of the most significant monuments of medieval Serbian culture and it belongs to the "Morava school". Immediately following its foundation, the monastery became the cultural centre of the Serbian Despotate. Its Resava school was well known for its manuscripts and translations throughout the 15th and 16th centuries, even after the fall of the Despotate to the Ottoman Turks.

The monastery complex consists of:

the church
the refectory, placed to the south of the church
the fortress with 11 towers, the largest of which is the keep, also known as the Despot's Tower (to the north of the church)
During the five centuries of Ottoman rule, the monastery was abandoned and wrecked several times. The lead roof was removed from the church, and so for over a century the frescoes inside were subject to damage by rainfall. As a result, about two-thirds of them were irremediably lost. In the 18th century, the western part of the church - the narthex - was heavily damaged in an explosion and was later rebuilt. The mosaic floor of that part of the church was fortunately preserved.

Manasija is a slavic name for Manasseh of Judah. Manasseh of Judah was the king of Judah who reinstated pagan worship in the Jerusalem temple. A later tradition recorded in Chronicles tells that Manasseh was taken captive to Babylon by the king of Assyria. The severity of Manasseh's imprisonment brought him to repentance. According to the Biblical account, God heard his cry, and he was restored to his kingdom (2 Chr. 33:11-13). He abandoned his idolatrous ways, and enjoined the people to worship Yahweh. Despot Stefan Lazarević was known as "the second Manasseh" among his contemporaries. Similary to Manasseh, Stefan gave up the tradition and became a loyal islamic vassal in his twenties, but later he turned into strong and independent christian ruler.

An archaeological team led by Marin Brmbolic located the remains of Despot Stefan Lazarević in the southwestern part of the monastery floor. DNA comparison with the remains of his father, Knez Lazar, confirmed that the remains belong to two closely related individuals

From wickipedia

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Additional Photos by bratislav obradovic (bracasha75) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2614 W: 81 N: 1175] (24591)
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