Xenophontos Cloister

The Xenophontos Monastery is 16th in the hierarchy of the monasteries of Mount Athos and it amounts  50-55 monks. The monastery was founded just before 998 Patriarch Gavriil IV made the monastery commonwealth  in 1784 and has been operating since then.

The present form of the monastery is the result of many  repairs and extensions that were completed at the end of the 18th century. Xenophontos Monastery has two Katholika honored in St. George. The oldest Katholikon is one of the smallest on Mount Athos and its narthex abuts substantially on the east side of the Trapeza. The very interesting frescoes of the main church are the Cretan painter Antoniou and date back to 1544. The newest Katholikon was founded by the Philotheos in 1817 and was completed in twenty years. The monastery holds the miraculous icon of the Odigitria Theotokos as a great treasure.

At the time of the Russian monk Vassilios Barsky (1744), a peculiar one among the Russians was mentioned as a famous miraculous water that flowed in the sand on the left side of the Moni’s beach.

For the past thirty-five years, under the guidance of the Elder and Sacred Archim  Alexiou,there is a struggle for spiritual offering and the restoration of its building complex and for the continuation of the traditional arts, such as hagiography and woodcarving. The monastery celebrates on 23rd of April St. George.

The old Catholic today is part of the monastic population. It is decorated by frescoes painted by the Cretan painter Antonios in 1544 and in the arch has been engraved the date 1545 where it testifies to the renovation of the temple. An inscription mentions as donors the Wallachian ruler John Matthew and his wife Eleni Vesaravas.

The new Katholicon also contains two mosaic icons of Saint Demetrius and St. George of the 13th century and the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary of Odigitria, a copy of the icon that was destroyed in the monastery of Chora during the Fall of Constantinople. The icon originally belonged to the Vatopedi Monastery but afterwards it was owned by Xenophon in 1730.

The library contains 600 manuscripts, 8 parchments, scrolls, papers and over 7,000 printed books. Several portable icons, crosses, functional objects, sacred bones, vestments and a piece of Timio Ksilo are kept in the sacristy. Among the bones is the image of the Metamorphosis, made of wax.

In this monastery is worth seeing the old katholikon with the frescoes of the Cretan School (1544), the chapel of Agios Dimitrios and the Trapeza with the frescoes of 1475.