Photographer's Note

This is one of my Rock cut church photo from Cappadocia and there are over 100 churches like this.
I think every Christian should visit this place at least once.I have been there 5 times so far and can't wait to go back to this Extraordinary Magical Place.
CT of Chicago

Rock Cut Churches and Monasteries of Cappadocia

Many settlements in Cappadocia were established primarily as monastic communities. As Bishop of Caesarea Mazaca in the 4th century, St. Basil the Great wrote the rules for monastic life that are still followed by monks and nuns of the Greek Orthodox Church. He advocated community life, prayer and physical labor rather than the solitary asceticism that was popular at the time and it was under his guidance that the first churches were built in Goreme Valley. Here, a number of small communities with their own churches formed the large monastic complex that is now the Open Air Museum. Hundreds of churches are reported to have been built in this valley but no churches from St. Basil's time remain. In Goreme, the Tokali Kilise or the "Buckle Church" is easily the loveliest of the churches with graceful arches and beautiful frescoes.

The most impressive monastery in Cappadocia is the Eskigumus Monastery to the east of Nigde off the Kayseri-Nigde road. It is the most southerly of the Cappadocian monasteries and lies close to the route taken by the invading Arabs who traversed the Tarsus Mountains from the south to plunder Kayseri in the 7th century. This route follows the Tarsus River through a precipitous defile called the Gulek Bogazi. It was known in the ancient world as the Cicilian Gates and was used by Alexander the Great in his eastward campaign against the Persians. The nondescript entrance to the Eskigumus Monastery was designed to shield the monastery complex from invaders passing by. It was so successful that the monastery was not discovered until 1963, having escaped the vandalism to which many of the Cappadocian churches and monasteries were subjected. The large inner courtyard boasts high walls surrounded by monastic rooms and storage chambers. The main church is spacious and airy and its well-preserved frescoes are considered to be the best example of Byzantine art in all of Cappadocia.

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Photo Information
Viewed: 2003
Points: 10
Additional Photos by Chris Tolga Pehlivan (turkamerikali) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 834 W: 0 N: 929] (3291)
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