Gouverneto Monastery or "Our Lady of Angels" Monastery is one of the oldest monasteries in Crete and is built at an altitude of 260 meters. It was built in 1537 by monks that came from the Monastery of Saint John that is on a steep mountain side north of Gouverneto. The exterior of the monastery resembles a Venetian fort. It is rectangular in shape (40x50 meters). There are towers in each of the 4 corners with turrets that where constructed for the protection of the monastery against invaders. Today only two of them are standing.

The monastery has 50 cells on two floors. The Catholicon is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and is cruciform without domes and has a narthex that is vertically aligned with the center aisle. The nave of the church is decorated with carved monster heads of unusual craftsmanship that is influences by Venetian art.

The chapel next to the church is dedicated to Saint John the Hermit (or Xenos) who was the founder of the monastery. There is also a chapel dedicated to the Ten Holy Martyrs. Before the Turkish invasion the monastery was very wealthy and influential. Many of the monks lost their lives during the 1821 Greek Revolution when the monastery was pillaged and all the monastery's records were destroyed. Later, during the Second World War, the monastery was attacked once again and it was seriously damaged.

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Rea Resort Hotel in
Chania, Crete, Greece

Stavros, Akrotiri, Chania
Tel:  +30 28210 39001-4
Fax: +30 28210 97504
E-mail: info@rearesorthotel.gr

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