Panagia Drossiani church


Location: Moni   

The Church of Panagia Drossiani on Naxos: The church of the Panagia Drossiani, meaning Dewy Virgin, is the oldest Christian church of Naxos. Located near Moni, it is also considered one of the most important Byzantine churches and is therefore of immense historical significance. There are two different views on why it is called. One reason is that the location where it is built is called Drossia while others believe that the name refers to the icon of the church seeping or weeping every time the village is in danger. Hence the name Dewy Virgin.

The exact location of the church is in the middle of Naxos alongside the road to Apollonas. It dates back at the end of 6th century A.D. It is full of rare paintings and offers a beautiful view of the Tragea Valley. The dome shows Jesus Christ Pantokrator.

In front of the altar on the right side, you will see Agios Georgios on a horse with a little boy sitting behind him carrying water. The early iconostasis was made of marble. However, when that was pulled down, a wooden one was found behind it. The wooden one was made of a heavy kind of wood which may have been chestnut tree wood. It is decorated with an ancient style relief tendril. Its stem traces out wide waves and has big grapes and strange twin vine leaves.

The church has a lovely courtyard which also houses the cemetery of the village. Every year on Good Friday during the mid-day, this church bustles with locals from the village of Moni celebrating an old tradition of offering strong alcohol, raki, and bread with raisins and nuts to all the guests.

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