Panagia Chrysokephalos header-Origenes de Europa

Panagia Chrysokephalos

Turkey, Fatih (Trabzon)

Panagia Chrysokephalos

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The Panagia Chrysokephalos Church (Greek Παναγία Χρυσοκέφαλος, «Panagia the Golden-Headed»), serving as both the catholicon for the see of Trebizond, and a church for a monastery. It was built sometime in the 10th or 11th century. After Ottoman conquest of the city in 1461, the building became a mosque.

During the heyday of the Empire of Trebizond, it was used as the resting-place for several dignitaries including Emperor John II Megas Komnenos in 1297, Metropolitan Niphon in 1364, and Emperor Alexios IV Megas Komnenos in 1429. The church became a mosque after the Ottoman conquest and first prayer was attended by Mehmet II, who adjoined a madrasah (Fatih Madrasa) to the building.

Ballance notes that it is «very difficult» to date any portion of the church. She mentions a report of a plaque bearing the date 914 found (since lost) under the floor of the present building during repairs in 1877; there is also a dedication hymn that was sung at its rebuilding after the Hamidogullari set fire to the town in 1341. However, she was unable to match any of its features to either period. «On stylistic grounds a date in the 10th or perhaps 11th century seems reasonable for the basilical layout, with the dome perhaps 12th century … but it is difficult to see how this can be reconciled with the evidence of the rededication hymn of the mid-14th century.« Ballance does note several minor details, such as lower windows and blocked doorways, date to the Turkish period. Though strongly basilical in character, it has a dome, and transepts open from floor to vault running north and south to the outer walls; the aisles, like the nave, are barrel-vaulted, with ribs, but have galleries over them, even over the eastern bays which are cut off from the rest by the transepts: and the vaults of the aisle bays on the ground floor span at right-angles to those of the nave and the galleries.


Monument or place to visitThe Church of Panagia Chyrsokephalos / Fatih Camii
StyleLate Byzantine.
Epochc.10th century – present.
State of conservationGood condition.
Degree of legal protection
Mailing addressFatih, Medeniyet Sk. No:3, 61040 Trabzon Merkez/Trabzon
Coordinates GPS41°00′16″N 39°43′10″E
Property, dependency
Possibility of visits by the general public or only specialists
Accessible to public visitors.
Conservation needs
Visiting hours and conditions
Ticket amount
Research work in progress
AccessibilityIn order to reach to the complex, visitors can take minibuses from city center (9 mins) or can walk from the center for approximately 17-18 mins.
Signaling if it is registered on the route
William Miller, Trebizond: The last Greek Empire of the Byzantine Era: 1204-1461, Chicago: Argonaut, 1969.
Antonio Sagona, The Heritage of Eastern Turkey from Earliest Settlements to Islam, Macmillan, 2016
Anthony M. Bryer, The Byzantine Monuments and Topography of the Pontos, ACLS Humanities, 2009.
Information websiteswikipedia.org
LocationFatih, Medeniyet Sk. No:3, 61040 Trabzon Merkez/Trabzon