Mount Athos


Mount Athos (/ˈæθɒs/; Greek: Ἄθως, [ˈa.θos]) is a mountain and peninsula in northeastern Greece and an important centre of Eastern Orthodox monasticism. It is governed as an autonomous polity within the Hellenic Republic, namely the monastic community of Mount Athos under the direct jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople.

Mount Athos
Agion Oros
Mt. Athos (3939757657).jpg
Highest point
Elevation2,033[1] m (6,670 ft)
Prominence2,012 m (6,601 ft)
Coordinates40°09′26″N 24°19′35″E / 40.15722°N 24.32639°E / 40.15722; 24.32639Coordinates: 40°09′26″N 24°19′35″E / 40.15722°N 24.32639°E / 40.15722; 24.32639
Criteriai, ii, iv, v, vi, vii
Designated1988 (12th session)
Reference no.454

Mount Athos is commonly referred to in Greek as the Agion Oros (Ἅγιον Ὄρος, 'Holy Mountain'). Other languages of Orthodox tradition also use names translating to 'Holy Mountain'. This includes Bulgarian, Macedonian and Serbian (Света Гора, Sveta Gora; Svyataya Gora); and Georgian (მთაწმინდა, mtats’minda). However, not all languages spoken in the region use this name; it is simply called "Athos" in Russian, Афон (Afon); and "Mount Athos" in Romanian, Muntele Athos or Muntele Atos. In the classical era, while the mountain was called Athos, the peninsula was known as Acté or Akté (Koinē Greek: Ἀκτή).

Mount Athos has been inhabited since ancient times and is known for its long Christian presence and historical monastic traditions, which date back to at least AD 800 and the Byzantine era. Today, over 2,000 monks from Greece and many other countries, including Eastern Orthodox countries such as Romania, Moldova, Georgia, Bulgaria, Serbia and Russia, live an ascetic life in Athos, isolated from the rest of the world. The Athonite monasteries feature a rich collection of well-preserved artifacts, rare books, ancient documents, and artworks of immense historical value, and Mount Athos has been listed as a World Heritage Site since 1988.

Although Mount Athos is legally part of the European Union like the rest of Greece, the Monastic community institutions have a special jurisdiction which was reaffirmed during the admission of Greece to the European Community (precursor to the EU).[2] This empowers the monastic community's authorities to regulate the free movement of people and goods in its territory; in particular, only males are allowed to enter.


Mount Athos - view from NW
A map of Mount Athos

The peninsula, the easternmost "leg" of the larger Chalkidiki peninsula in central Macedonia, protrudes 50 km (31 mi)[3] into the Aegean Sea at a width of between 7 and 12 km (4.3 and 7.5 mi) and covers an area of 335.6 km2 (130 sq mi). The actual Mount Athos has steep, densely forested slopes reaching up to 2,033 m (6,670 ft). The Athos peninsula, unlike Sithonia and Kassandra, is a geological continuation of the Rhodope Mountains of northern Greece and Bulgaria.[4]

The surrounding seas, especially at the end of the peninsula, can be dangerous. In ancient Greek history two fleet disasters in the area are recorded: In 492 BC Darius, the king of Persia, lost 300 ships under general Mardonius.[5] In 411 BC the Spartans lost a fleet of 50 ships under the admiral Epicleas.[6]

Mount Athos has an extensive network of footpaths, many of which date back to the Byzantine period. Many are typically not accessible to motor vehicle traffic.[7]


Daily visitors to Mount Athos are restricted to 100 lay Orthodox and 10 non-Orthodox male pilgrims, and all are required to obtain a special entrance permit from the Mount Athos Pilgrims' Bureau called the diamonitirion (διαμονητήριον). Pilgrims pick up the permit from the Pilgrims' Bureau office in Thessaloniki and then present it at Ouranopoli or Ierissos before boarding the ferry to Mount Athos. This permit is valid for three days unless a monastery requests permission to extend it, or if an extension application is submitted at Karyes. Orthodox clergy are required to obtain a special entrance permit from the Patriarchate of Constantinople. Only men are permitted to visit the territory, which is called the "Garden of Virgin Mary" (Greek: Περιβόλι της Παναγιάς, romanizedPerivoli tis Panagias) by the monks.[8] Residents on the peninsula must be men aged 18 and over who are members of the Eastern Orthodox Church and also either monks or workers.[9]

Females are forbidden including domestic animals, the only exception being cats due to their mousing abilities. The main goal being to ensure celibacy, but also because the Virgin Mary alone represents her sex on Mount Athos, which is dedicated to her glory.[10][11]

As part of measures to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, visits to Mount Athos were suspended from 19 March 2020[12] until 11 May 2021.[13]


A 3D model of Athos


Imaginary view of the Alexander monument, proposed by Dinocrates. Engraving by Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach, 1725

In Greek mythology, Athos is the name of one of the Gigantes that challenged the Greek gods during the Gigantomachia. Athos threw a massive rock at Poseidon which fell in the Aegean Sea and became Mount Athos. According to another version of the story, Poseidon used the mountain to bury the defeated giant.

Homer mentions the mountain Athos in the Iliad.[14] Herodotus writes that, during the Persian invasion of Thrace in 492 BC, the fleet of the Persian commander Mardonius was wrecked with losses of 300 ships and 20,000 men, by a strong North wind while attempting to round the coast near Mount Athos.[15] Herodotus mentions the peninsula, then called Akte, telling us that Pelasgians from the island of Lemnos populated it and naming five cities thereon, Sane, Kleonai (Cleonae), Thyssos (Thyssus), Olophyxos (Olophyxus), and Akrothoon (Acrothoum).[16] Strabo also mentions the cities of Dion (Dium) and Akrothoon.[17] Eretria also established colonies on Akte. At least one other city was established in the Classical period: Akanthos (Acanthus). Some of these cities minted their own coins.

The peninsula was on the invasion route of Xerxes I, who spent three years[18] excavating the Xerxes Canal across the isthmus to allow the passage of his invasion fleet in 483 BC. After the death of Alexander the Great, the architect Dinocrates (Deinokrates) proposed carving the entire mountain into a statue of Alexander.

Pliny the Elder stated in 77 AD that the inhabitants of Mount Athos could "live to their four hundredth year" due to the fact that they eat the skin of vipers.[19]

The history of the peninsula during latter ages is shrouded by the lack of historical accounts. Archaeologists have not been able to determine the exact location of the cities reported by Strabo. It is believed that they must have been deserted when Athos' new inhabitants, the monks, started arriving some time before the ninth century AD.[20]

Early ChristianityEdit


According to the Athonite tradition, the Blessed Virgin Mary was sailing accompanied by St John the Evangelist from Joppa to Cyprus to visit Lazarus. When the ship was blown off course to then-pagan Athos, it was forced to anchor near the port of Klement, close to the present monastery of Iviron. The Virgin walked ashore and, overwhelmed by the wonderful and wild natural beauty of the mountain, she blessed it and asked her Son for it to be her garden. A voice was heard saying, "Ἔστω ὁ τόπος οὗτος κλῆρος σὸς καὶ περιβόλαιον σὸν καὶ παράδεισος, ἔτι δὲ καὶ λιμὴν σωτήριος τῶν θελόντων σωθῆναι" (Translation: "Let this place be your inheritance and your garden, a paradise and a haven of salvation for those seeking to be saved"). From that moment the mountain was consecrated as the garden of the Mother of God and was out of bounds to all other women.[note 1]

Historical documents on ancient Mount Athos history are very few. It is certain that monks have been there since the fourth century, and possibly since the third. During Constantine I's reign (324–337) both Christians and followers of traditional Greek religion were living there. During the reign of Julian (361–363), the churches of Mount Athos were destroyed, and Christians hid in the woods and inaccessible places.[21]

Later, during Theodosius I's reign (379–395), the temples of the traditional Greek religion were destroyed. The lexicographer Hesychius of Alexandria states that in the fifth century there was still a temple and a statue of "Zeus Athonite". After the Islamic conquest of Egypt in the seventh century, many Orthodox monks from the Egyptian desert tried to find another calm place; some of them came to the Athos peninsula. An ancient document states that monks "built huts of wood with roofs of straw [...] and by collecting fruit from the wild trees were providing themselves improvised meals."[22]

Byzantine era: the first monasteriesEdit

A Byzantine watch tower, protecting the dock (αρσανάς, arsanás) of Xeropotamou monastery

The chroniclers Theophanes the Confessor (end of 8th century) and Georgios Kedrenos (11th century) wrote that the 726 eruption of the Thera volcano was visible from Mount Athos, indicating that it was inhabited at the time. The historian Genesios recorded that monks from Athos participated at the seventh Ecumenical Council of Nicaea of 787. Following the Battle of Thasos in 829, Athos was deserted for some time due to the destructive raids of the Cretan Saracens. Around 860, the famous monk Euthymios the Younger came to Athos.[23]

Holy Mount Athos: The Holy Mount Athos: Sheltering the Oldest Orthodox Literary Treasures (1926), by Alphonse Mucha, The Slav Epic

In 958, the monk Athanasios the Athonite (Άγιος Αθανάσιος ο Αθωνίτης) arrived on Mount Athos. In 962 he built the large central church of the Protaton in Karyes. In the next year, with the support of his friend Emperor Nicephorus Phocas, the monastery of Great Lavra was founded, still the largest and most prominent of the twenty monasteries existing today. It enjoyed the protection of the Byzantine emperors during the following centuries, and its wealth and possessions grew considerably.[24] Alexios I Komnenos, who was the Byzantine Emperor from 1081 to 1118, gave Mount Athos complete autonomy from the Ecumenical Patriarch and the Bishop of Ierissos, and also exempted the monasteries from taxation. Furthermore, until 1312, the Protos of Karyes was directly appointed by the Byzantine Emperor.[25]

The first charter of Mount Athos, signed in 972 by Emperor John Tzimiskes, Athanasius the Athonite, and 46 hegumenoi, is currently kept at the Protaton in Karyes. It is also known as the Tragos ('goat'), since it was written on goatskin parchment.[26] The second charter or typikon of Mount Athos was written in September 1045 and signed by 180 hegumenoi. Emperor Constantine IX Monomachos ratified the typikon with an imperial chrysobull in June 1046. This charter was also the first official document that referred to Mount Athos as the "Holy Mountain."[25]

From 985 to 1287,[27] there was a Benedictine monastery on Mount Athos (between Magisti Lavra and Philotheou Karakallou[28]) known as Amalphion after the people of Amalfi who founded it.[29] The monastery was founded with support of John the Iberian, a Georgian and the founder of the Iviron Monastery, and is thought to have influenced Latin Christian monasticism and piety.[27]

The Fourth Crusade in the 13th century brought new Roman Catholic overlords, which forced the monks to complain and ask for the intervention of Pope Innocent III until the restoration of the Byzantine Empire. The peninsula was raided by Catalan mercenaries in the 14th century in the so-called Catalan vengeance due to which the entry of people of Catalan origin was prohibited until 2005. The 14th century also saw the theological conflict over the hesychasm practised on Mount Athos and defended by Gregory Palamas (Άγιος Γρηγόριος ο Παλαμάς). In late 1371 or early 1372 the Byzantines defeated an Ottoman attack on Athos.[24]

Serbian era and influencesEdit

Serbian lords of the Nemanjić dynasty offered financial support to the monasteries of Mount Athos, while some of them also made pilgrimages and became monks there. Stefan Nemanja helped build the Hilandar monastery on Mount Athos together with his son Archbishop Saint Sava in 1198.[30][31]

From 1342 until 1372 Mount Athos was under Serbian administration. Serbian Emperor Stefan Dušan helped Mount Athos with many large donations to all monasteries. In The charter of emperor Stefan Dušan to the Monastery of Hilandar[32] the Emperor gave to the monastery Hilandar direct rule over many villages and churches, including the church of Svetog Nikole u Dobrušti in Prizren, the church of Svetih Arhanđela in Štip, the Church of Svetog Nikole in Vranje and surrounding lands and possessions. He also gave large possessions and donations to the Karyes Hermitage of St. Sabas and the Holy Archangels in Jerusalem.[33] Empress Helena, wife of the Emperor Stefan Dušan, was among the very few women allowed to visit and stay in Mount Athos.[34]

Thanks to the donations by Dušan, the Serbian monastery of Hilandar was enlarged to more than 10,000 hectares, thus having the largest possessions on Mount Athos among other monasteries, and occupying 1/3 of the area. Serbian nobleman Antonije Bagaš, together with Nikola Radonja, bought and restored the ruined Agiou Pavlou monastery between 1355 and 1365, becoming its abbot.[35]

The time of the Serbian Empire was a prosperous period for Hilandar and of other monasteries in Mount Athos and many of them were restored and rebuilt and significantly enlarged.[34]

Serbian princess Mara Branković was the second Serbian woman that was granted permissions to visit the area.[36] At the end of the 15th century five monasteries on Mount Athos had Serbian monks and were under the Serbian Prior: Docheiariou, Grigoriou, Ayiou Pavlou, Ayiou Dionysiou and Hilandar[37]

In modern times after the end of Ottoman rule new Serbian kings from the Obrenović dynasty and Karađorđević dynasty and the new bourgeois class continued their support of Mount Athos. After the dissolution of the Yugoslav Communist regime and Socialist Yugoslavia many presidents and prime ministers of Serbia visited Mount Athos.[38]

Ottoman eraEdit

The Byzantine Empire ceased to exist in the 15th century and the Ottoman Empire took its place.[39]

From the account of the Rus' pilgrim Isaiah, by the end of the 15th century monasteries in Mount Athos represented monastic communities from large and diverse parts of the Balkans (Slavic, Albanian, Greek). Other monasteries listed by him bear no such designations. In particular, Docheiariou, Grigoriou, Ayiou Pavlou, Ayiou Dionysiou, and Chilandariou were Serbian; Karakalou and Philotheou were Albanian; Panteleïmon was Russian; Simonopetra was Bulgarian; Great Lavra, Vatopedi, Pantokratoros and Stavronikita were Greek; and Zographou, Kastamonitou, Xeropotamou, Koutloumousiou, Xenophontos, Iviron and Protaton did not bear any designation.[40]

View of the area around Vatopedi monastery

Sultan Selim I was a substantial benefactor of the Xeropotamou monastery. In 1517, he issued a fatwa and a Hatt-i Sharif ("noble edict") that "the place, where the Holy Gospel is preached, whenever it is burned or even damaged, shall be erected again." He also endowed privileges to the Abbey and financed the construction of the dining area and underground of the Abbey as well as the renovation of the wall paintings in the central church that were completed between the years 1533–1541.[41]

This new way of monastic organization was an emergency measure taken by the monastic communities to counter their harsh economic environment. Contrary to the cenobitic system, monks in idiorrhythmic communities have private property, work for themselves, they are solely responsible for acquiring food and other necessities and they dine separately in their cells, only meeting with other monks at church. At the same time, the monasteries' abbots were replaced by committees and at Karyes the Protos was replaced by a four-member committee.[42]

In 1749, with the establishment of the Athonite Academy near Vatopedi monastery, the local monastic community took a leading role in the modern Greek Enlightenment movement of the 18th century.[43] This institution offered high level education, especially under Eugenios Voulgaris, where ancient philosophy and modern physical science were taught.[44]

Present eraEdit

In November 1912, during the First Balkan War, the Ottomans were forced out by the Greek Navy.[45]

In June 1913, a small Russian fleet, consisting of the gunboat Donets and the transport ships Tsar and Kherson, delivered the archbishop of Vologda, and a number of troops to Mount Athos to intervene in the theological controversy over imiaslavie (a Russian Orthodox movement).

In January 2008 about a dozen Greek women violated the 1,000-year ban on females during a protest over disputed land. The demonstrators, totalling some 1,000, were opposing claims by five of the community’s monasteries to some 8,100 hectares (20,000 acres) of land on the nearby Chalkidiki peninsula.[46]

View of Dafni


Much of Mount Athos is covered with mixed broadleaf deciduous and evergreen forests. Black pine (Pinus nigra) forests are found at higher elevations. Sclerophyllous scrub vegetation is also found throughout Mount Athos. Typical forest trees are sweet chestnut (Castanea sativa), holm oak (Quercus ilex), kermes oak (Quercus coccifera), Hungarian oak (Quercus frainetto), oriental plane (Platanus orientalis), black pine (Pinus nigra), and cedar (Calocedrus decurrens). Other common plant species include the strawberry tree (Arbutus unedo and Arbutus andrachne), cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), laurel (Laurus nobilis), lentisk (Pistacia lentiscus), phillyrea (Phillyrea latifolia), wild olive (Olea europea), and heather (Erica spp.).[47] Deciduous rees that are primarily found alongside streams include white willow, laurel, Oriental plane, and alder trees.[48]

Aleppo pine (Pinus halepensis) is more commonly found in the northern part of the peninsula. Broadleaf maquis is found further south. Deciduous broadleaf forests dominated by sweet chestnut lies above the broadleaf maquis zone. There are also mixed forests consisting deciduous oak trees, as well as limes, aspen, hop hornbeam, and maple. Black pine and stinking juniper can be found at higher elevations. Some herbaceous plants with tubers and bulbs include crocus, anemone, cyclamen, and fritillary species.[49]

At least 35 plant species are endemic to Mount Athos, most of which are found in the area of the main summit in the south.[50] Isatis tinctoria ssp. athoa, a woad subspecies, and Viola athois are named after Mount Athos.[49]

Mount Athos is also home to 350 species of mushrooms.[51][52][53][54][55]


Mammals include the grey wolf (Canis lupus), wild boar (Sus scrofa), red fox (Vulpes vulpes), jackal (Canis aureus), European badger (Meles meles), beech marten (Martes foina), stoat (Mustela erminea), weasel (Mustela nivalis vulgaris), European hedgehog (Erinaceus concolor), shrews (Crocidura spp.), and Mediterranean monk seal (Monachus monachus).[47] Other mammal species include roe deer, hares, and red squirrels.[56]

Birds include the black stork (Ciconia nigra), short-toed snake-eagle (Circaetus gallicus), golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), lesser kestrel (Falco naumanni), capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus), eagle owl (Bubo bubo), yelkouan shearwater (Puffinus yelkouan), and Audouin's gull (Larus audouinii).[57][58] Other bird species include swifts, swallows, martins, nightingales, and hoopoes.[56]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ St Gregory Palamas included this tradition in his book Life of Petros the Athonite, p. 150, 1005 AD.


  1. ^ "Mount Athos Home". Archived from the original on 1 October 2015. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
  2. ^ "Official Journal of the European Communities: L 291 – Volume 22 – 19 November 1979". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  3. ^ Robert Draper, "Mount Athos" Archived 11 August 2011 at the Wayback Machine, National Geographic magazine, December 2009
  4. ^ Speake, Graham (2014). Mount Athos: renewal in paradise. Limni, Evia, Greece. p. 32. ISBN 978-960-7120-34-2. OCLC 903320491.
  5. ^ Herodotus, Histories, book VI ("Erato"); Aeschylus, The Persians.
  6. ^ Diodorus Siculus, Bibliotheca historica XIII 41, 1–3.
  7. ^ "Footpaths of the Holy Mountain – FOMA". FOMA. 6 January 2019. Retrieved 16 June 2022.
  8. ^ Athonite monasticism at the dawn of the third millennium, Pravmir Portal, September 2007.
  9. ^ "How to Visit Mount Athos | Sithonia Greece". Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  10. ^ "Mount Athos Ban on Females Steeped in History, Mystery". 23 April 2021. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  11. ^ "Why are women banned from Mount Athos?". BBC News. 26 May 2016.
  12. ^ James J. Williams. "Coronavirus: Mount Athos Closes for Pilgrims and Visitors until March 30", Belle News, 20 March 2020. Retrieved on 20 March 2020
  13. ^ Bella Kontogianni (11 May 2021). "Greece Holy Mountain of Athos Reopens After Lockdown". Greek Reporter. Retrieved 3 December 2021.
  14. ^ Homer, Iliad 14,229.
  15. ^ Herodotus, Histories 6,44.
  16. ^ Herodotus, Histories 7,22.
  17. ^ Strabo, Geography 7,33,1.
  18. ^ Warry, J. 1998 Warfare in the Classical World Salamander Book Ltd., London p 35
  19. ^ Pliny the Elder. [1], Retrieved on 30 October 2021.
  20. ^ Kadas, Sotiris (1981). The Holy Mountain (in Greek). Athens: Ekdotike Athenon. p. 9. ISBN 978-960-213-199-2.
  21. ^ Speake 2002, p. 27.
  22. ^ Biography of Saint Athanasius the Athonite
  23. ^ Kazhdan, Alexander P., ed. (2005). "Euthymios the Younger". The Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium. doi:10.1093/acref/9780195046526.001.0001. ISBN 978-0-19-504652-6. Retrieved 15 March 2017. also called Euthymios of Thessalonike, saint; baptismal name Niketas; born village of Opso, Galatia 823/4
  24. ^ a b Fine, John (1987). The Late Medieval Balkans. University of Michigan Press. pp. 381. ISBN 978-0-472-10079-8.
  25. ^ a b Speake, Graham (2014). Mount Athos: renewal in paradise. Limni, Evia, Greece. pp. 60–62. ISBN 978-960-7120-34-2. OCLC 903320491.
  26. ^ Speake, Graham (2014). Mount Athos: renewal in paradise. Limni, Evia, Greece. p. 33. ISBN 978-960-7120-34-2. OCLC 903320491.
  27. ^ a b Shoemaker, Stephen J. (2011). "Mary at the Cross, East and West: Maternal Compassion and Affective Piety in the Earliest "Life of the Virgin" and the High Middle Ages". The Journal of Theological Studies. 62 (2): 596. doi:10.1093/jts/flr135. JSTOR 24638059.
  28. ^ "Amalfion Benedictine Monastery on Mount Athos".
  29. ^ "Drogeria internetowa sklep z kosmetykami online" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 January 2012.
  30. ^ 100 najznamenitijih Srba. Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. 1993. ISBN 978-86-82273-08-0.; 1st place
  31. ^ Mileusnić 2000, p. 38.
  32. ^ Komatina, Ivana. "I. Komatina, Povelja cara Stefana Dušana manastiru Hilandaru (The charter of emperor Stefan Dušan to the Monastery Hilandar), SSA 13 (2014)". {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  33. ^ "Serbian Church in History".
  34. ^ a b (, Veselin Ostojin (, Jasmina Maric. "Srpsko Nasledje".
  35. ^ Angold, Michael (17 August 2006). The Cambridge History of Christianity: Volume 5, Eastern Christianity. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521811132 – via Google Books.
  36. ^ "SERBIA".
  37. ^ Bakalopulos, A. E. (11 April 1973). "History of Macedonia, 1354–1833. [By] A.E. Vacalopoulos" – via Google Books.
  38. ^ Pešić, Milenko. "Blagoslov Hilandara za kraljeve i predsednike".
  39. ^ John Anthony McGuckin (15 December 2010). The Encyclopedia of Eastern Orthodox Christianity. John Wiley & Sons. p. 182. ISBN 978-1-4443-9254-8. After the conquest of Constantinople in 1453, Byzantine political influence was effectively ended, but the prerogatives of the Greek Church remained and were amalgamated by the Sultans.
  40. ^ Vacalopoulos, A.E. (1973). History of Macedonia, 1354–1833. pp. 166–167. At the end of the 15th century, the Russian pilgrim Isaiah relates that the monks support themselves with various kinds of work including the cultivation of their vineyards....He also tells us that nearly half the monasteries are Slav or Albanian. As Serbian he instances Docheiariou, Grigoriou, Ayiou Pavlou, a monastery near Ayiou Pavlou and dedicated to St. John the Theologian (he no doubt means the monastery of Ayiou Dionysiou), and Chilandariou. Panteleïmon is Russian, Simonopetra is Bulgarian, and Karakallou and Philotheou are Albanian. Zographou, Kastamonitou (see fig. 58), Xeropotamou, Koutloumousiou, Xenophontos, Iveron and Protaton he mentions without any designation; while Lavra, Vatopedi (see fig. 59), Pantokratoros, and Stavronikita (which had been recently founded by the patriarch Jeremiah I) he names specifically as being Greek (see map 6).
  41. ^ Municipality of Stagira, Acanthos Archived 27 December 2004 at the Wayback Machine
  42. ^ Kadas, Sotiris (1981). The Holy Mountain (in Greek). Athens: Ekdotike Athenon. pp. 14–16. ISBN 978-960-213-199-2.
  43. ^ Facaros, Dana; Theodorou, Linda (2003). Greece. New Holland Publishers. p. 578. ISBN 978-1-86011-898-2.
  44. ^ Scupoli, Lorenzo; Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain (1978). Unseen warfare: the Spiritual combat and Path to paradise of Lorenzo Scupoli. St Vladimir's Seminary Press. p. 41. ISBN 978-0-913836-52-1.
  45. ^ "The Famous Abode of Monks in Greek Hands". London Standard. London. 16 November 1912. p. 9.  
  46. ^ Grohmann, Karolos (9 January 2008). "Greek women enter male-only Mount Athos community". Reuters.
  47. ^ a b UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre (22 May 2017). "Mount Athos". World Heritage Datasheet. Retrieved 10 June 2022.
  48. ^ Speake, Graham (2014). Mount Athos: renewal in paradise. Limni, Evia, Greece. p. 33. ISBN 978-960-7120-34-2. OCLC 903320491.
  49. ^ a b Speake, Graham (2014). Mount Athos: renewal in paradise. Limni, Evia, Greece. p. 34. ISBN 978-960-7120-34-2. OCLC 903320491.
  50. ^ Ganiatsas, K. (2003). I vlastesis kai i chloris tis chersonesou tou Agiou Orous.
  51. ^ Cosgrove, Denis E.; Della Dora, Veronica (2009). High places: cultural geographies of mountains, ice and science. London: I.B. Tauris & Co. ISBN 978-1-4416-2965-4. OCLC 503441715.
  52. ^ S. Dafis, ‘Anthrōpines drastēriotētes kai fysiko perivallon’, in S. Dafis et al. (eds.), Fysekai Perivallon sto Agion Oros, Thessalonica, 1998.
  53. ^ G. Sideropoulos, Agion Oros: anafores stēn anthropogeōgrafia, Athens, 2000, p. 28.
  54. ^ O. Rackham, ‘Our Lady’s Garden: the historical ecology of the Holy Mountain’, Friends of Mount Athos, Annual Report (2000), p. 50.
  55. ^ D. Babalonas, ‘Chlōrida kai endemismos tou Agiou Orous’, in M. Parcharidou and M. Fountoulēs (eds.), Agion Oros: fysē, latreia, technē, Vol. I, Thessalonica, 1999, p. 119.
  56. ^ a b Speake, Graham (2014). Mount Athos: renewal in paradise. Limni, Evia, Greece. p. 37. ISBN 978-960-7120-34-2. OCLC 903320491.
  57. ^ Grimmett, R. & Jones, T. (eds) (1989). Important Bird Areas in Europe. Technical Publication #9, ICBP, Cambridge, U.K.
  58. ^ Heath, M. & Evans, M. (eds) (2000). Important Bird Areas in Europe: Priority Sites for Conservation Vol.2. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.


  • Holy Mountain. Stone Arched Bridges and Aqueducts (ISBN 978-618-00-0827-2) by Frangiscos Martinos. Edited by Dimitri Michalopoulos (Athens, 2019).
  • Mount Athos ISBN 960-213-075-X by Sotiris Kadas. An illustrated guide to the monasteries and their history (Athens 1998). With many illustrations of the Byzantine art treasures on Mount Athos.
  • Athos The Holy Mountain by Sydney Loch. Published 1957 & 1971 (Librairie Molho, Thessaloniki). Loch spent most of his life in the Byzantine tower at Ouranopolis, close to Athos, and describes his numerous visits to the Holy Mountain.
  • The Station: Athos: Treasures and Men by Robert Byron. First published 1931, reprinted with an introduction by John Julius Norwich, 1984.
  • Dare to be Free ISBN 0-330-10629-5 by Walter Babington Thomas. Offers insights into the lives of the monks of Mt Athos during World War II, from the point of view of an escaped POW who spent a year on the peninsula evading capture.
  • Blue Guide: Greece ISBN 0-393-30372-1, pp. 600–03. Offers history and tourist information.
  • Mount Athos: Renewal in Paradise ISBN 978-0300093537, by Graham Speake. Published by Yale University Press in 2002. An extensive book about Athos in the past, the present and the future. Includes valuable tourist information. Features numerous full-colour photographs of the peninsula and daily life in the monasteries. 2nd edition published by Denise Harvey in 2014, which includes revisions, updates, and a new chapter documenting the changes that have occurred in the twelve years since its first publication.
  • From the Holy Mountain by William Dalrymple. ISBN 0-8050-6177-0. Published 1997.
  • Ульянов О. Г. The influence of the monasticism of Holy Mount Athos on the liturgical reform movement in the Late Byzantine // Church, Society and Monasticism. The second international monastic symposium at Sant’Anselmo. Roma, 2006.
  • Ivanov, Emil: Das Bildprogramm des Narthex im Rila-Kloster in Bulgarien unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Wasserweihezyklen auf dem Athos, Diss., Erlangen, 2002.
  • Ivanov, Emil: Apokallypsedarstellungen in der nachbyzantinischen Kunst, in: Das Münster, 3, 2002, 208–217.
  • Encounters on the Holy Mountain: Stories from Mount Athos ISBN 978-2-503-58911-4, P. Howorth, C. Thomas (eds). Published by Brepols in 2020.
  • Leigh Fermor, Patrick: The Broken Road. The final volume of his original trilogy, edited by Colin Thubron and Artemis Cooper, has an excellent descriptive tour around each of the main Monasteries, from his visit in January-February 1935.
  • Fotić, Aleksandar (1994). "The Official Explanations for the Confiscation and Sale of Monasteries (Churches) and their Estates at the Time of Selim II". Turcica: Revue d'études turques. 26: 34–54.
  • Fotić, Aleksandar (2010). "Athonite Travelling Monks and the Ottoman Authorities (16th - 18th Centuries)". Perspectives on Ottoman Studies: Papers from the 18th Symposium of the International Committee of Pre-Ottoman and Ottoman Studies (CIEPO). Berlin: LIT Verlag. pp. 157–165.
  • "Mount Athos". National Geographic. Vol. 164, no. 6. December 1983. pp. 738–766. ISSN 0027-9358. OCLC 643483454.

External linksEdit

  • Mount Athos Center
  • Mount Athos information guide
  • A website about Athos
  • Treasures of Mount Athos
  • Friends of Mount Athos (FoMA) website
  • Climbing the Holy Mountain (Friends of Mount Athos website)
  • Mount Athos Foundation of America
  • 360° virtual panoramas from Athos
  • Information and services for visitors
  • Hilandar Monastery (in Serbian)
  • Mount Athos, HD video