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Geraki Castle

Last Update: Aug 2009
Castles & Fortresses, Cultural heritage GERAKI , LACONIA , GREECE
23058 GERAKI , LACONIA , GREECE
Tel.: +30 27310 71329

Geraki Castle - Photo Gallery

Geraki Castle - Overview

  The castle is built on a low hill, at the southwest slopes of mount Parnon, near the village of Geraki. It was founded in 1209 by the Frankish baron Guy de Nivelet and remained under Frankish occupation until 1259. After the Franks were defeated in the battle of Pelagonia in 1259, the castle was given over to the Greeks in 1262 and supported the Despotate of Mystras (1262-1460).
The church of St. George and remains of urban buildings are preserved inside the castle, while ruins of buildings and churches have survived outside the fortified area. At the end of the 17th century the castle was captured by the Venetians, in 1715 was occupied by the Turks, and was finally abandoned at the end of the 18th century.
For many years the 5th Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities has been conducting restoration work on the monuments of Geraki. Work has been almost completed for the churches and is currently progressing on the fortification walls and the secular buildings. The wall paintings of the churches have also been restored. A large Early Christian basilica was excavated by A. Xyngopoulos in the outskirts of the village of Geraki, to the SW of the church of St. Athanassios. The apse of a second Early Christian basilica has been located under the apse of the church of Saint Sozon.

The most important monuments on the site are:
Castle and remains of urban buildings inside and outside the fortification. Monuments inside the castle are:
Church of St. George. Three-aisled basilica with a narthex, decorated with wall paintings dated to the 14th century.
Church of Our Lady Zoodochos Pighi (the Life-giving Source). Aisleless church with wall paintings dated to the 15th century.
Church of St. Paraskevi. Cross-vaulted church, decorated with wall paintings of the 15th century.
"Pera Ecclesies" (Far Churches). Church of Prophet Elijah, aisleless, with wall paintings dating from the 15th century; church of the Epiphany, cross-vaulted, with wall paintings dating from the 13th century; church of the Taxiarches (the Archangels), cross-vaulted, with wall paitnings dated to the 15th century.
Monuments in the modern settlement:
Church of Evangelistria (Our Lady of the Annunciation). Aisleless, cross-in-square church, decorated with wall paintings of the 12-13th centuries.
Church of Saint Sozon. Domed, four-column, cross-in-square church, probably built in the 12th century. The interior is decorated with wall paintings dated to the 13th century.
Church of St. Athanassios. Domed, four-column, cross-in-square church, probably built in the 12th century. The interior is decorated with wall paintings dated to the 13th century.
Church of St. Nicholas. Two-aisled church, decorated with wall paintings dating from the end of the 13th century.
Church of St. John Chrysostomos. Aisleless church with two layers of wall paintings, dated to the end of the 13th-beginning of the 14th century, and the middle of the 15th century.

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Visiting Information • By appointment
Castle • Period of Latin Occupation, 1204-16th century
On site monuments • Churches / Late Byzantine period, AD 1204-1453 • Frescoes / Late Byzantine period, AD 1204-1453

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