ART IN PRAYER
The Church of the Trei Ierarhi Monastery

Situated within the old precincts of the city, on the Ulita Domneasca Lane (at present Stefan cel Mare si Sfânt Boulevard), the Church of the Trei Ierarhi Monastery was built between 1637 - 1639 and consecrated on the 6-th of May, 1639, by Metropolitan Varlaam of Moldavia. The buildind stucture was based on the Galata Church plan (1584) which marked the second stage in Romanian architecture.
>From an architectural perspective the church developed the traditional trefoil shaped plane, but it is the outside carved ornamentation that constitutes the peak of its aesthetic creativity. From the foundation to the spires, the refined geometry of Romanian folk art is wovwn with elements of relief and oriental arabesques but also with ornaments characteristic of the Western art. A unique systesis of seemingly non-reconcilable aesthetic perspectives, the East and the West, the church is a symbol of art in prayer. The silent musicality of thew sculptural harmony expresses the liturgical chants from the inside of this holy building.
The painting was made by the most famous masters in the Orthodox world of those times, and the embroidery and the elements of the interior with which the church was furnished had the magnificence and the brilliance of the Byzantine foundings.
Plundered and burnt by invaders from the East (1650) and from the North (1686), shaken by earthquaker (1711, 1781, 1795, 1802), the church was lifted from abasement only as late as after the War of Independence (1877). The restoration was achieved between 1822 - 1887 (the architecture) and until 1898 (the painting and the re-arrangement of the interior) the consecration of the church taking place in 1904 under King Charles I.
The Gothic Room building was raised by Vasile Lupu, being restored several times, last time in 1960.
A celebration of art, the church of "Trei Ierarhi" (The Three Hierarchs) is inscribed in history as an authentic establishment of culture and spirituality. After the city of Iassy piously received the relics of Saint Paraskeve in 1641, it was in this same city that the Holy Synod adopted the famous Orthodox Creed, and it was in this church that, in 1645, the Patriarch of Jerusalem was anointed.
Vasile Lupu's College (1640), the basis of the future Royal Academy and the printing press installed here, by which the Romanian Book of Teachings was printed in 1643 are some of the elements that make the "Trei Ierarhi" monastery not only a Monastery of the Patriarchs but also a Monastery of the Teachers, a title confirmed by the history of Romanian education during the XVIII-th century.
Reflecting the universal character of our Church, this center of Romanian spirituality was also the origin og Greece's fight for independence in 1821.
Inside the church, next to the founders of the "Trei Ierarhi", the wandering learned prince Dimitrie Cantemir and the first ruler of hte united Romania, Alexandu Ioan Cuza, rest in their eternal sleep.
A symbol of conciliation and forgiveness, of sacrifice and piousness, the church glorifies in prayer the joy of art beauty in the saving love of the Almighty.

***

"It is impossible to describe it through tongue or pen." (Evlia Celebi, Turkish traveler, 1639)

"This monastery is unique and exceedingly beautyful; it looks like a citadel and is surounded by stone walls."
"This holy church lies in the midst of the monastery; it is made entirely of finished stone and it is carved all over the outside walls with such an artistry that it has amazed the whole world." (Paul de Alep, 1653)

Copyright: Trinitas.


ART GALERY

The Church of the Three Saint Hierarchs.




Sculptural detail.

The Gothic Room.
The building in which the Gothic Room is, last restored in 1960.



The niche where thw relics of Saint Paraskeve were plased on May 13, 1641. After the fire of 1889 the relics were taken to the Metropolitan Cathedral in Iassy where they have remeined up to this day.



The icon of the Saint Hierarchs - mosaic above the entrace in the pronaos.



Rejoice, you who are filled with grace!.
Inside the altar of the church.



Prince Vasile Lupu and the family of the founder - votive painting, fragments from the original fresco.



The Three Saint Hierarchs, icon from the XVII-th century.



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