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  • St. John Prodromos Monastery
  • Sozopol
  • Apollonia, Sozopolis



    • The Italian Database is the result of a collaboration between:

      MIBAC (Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali - Direzione Generale per i Beni Archeologici),

      ICCD (Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo e la Documentazione) and

      AIAC (Associazione Internazionale di Archeologia Classica).

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    Summary (English)

    • ST. JOHN PRODROMOS MONASTERY (Kazimir Popkonstantinov, Tsonya Drazheva, Rossina Kostova – The St. John Island is situated at 1 nautical mile from Sozopol and has an area of 26 ha. The first archaeological explorations were carried out in 1985. A sanctuary of the 7th – 4th centuries BC, probably devoted to Apollo, was documented. Buildings protected by a fortification wall were discovered. During the end of the 4th – beginning of the 5th century AD, the St. Mary Basilica was built over the ruins of the pagan sanctuary. The basilica was reconstructed during the 9th – 10th century. Part of its frescoes was preserved. The St. John Prodromos Monastery was probably built in the beginning of the 10th century. According to Byzantine historical sources, the monastery was renovated in 1263 and became a favorite residence of the Patriarchs of Constantinople. During certain periods of the Middle Ages, the monastery was under the patronage of the Bulgarian Kings. In 1629 the monastery was destroyed by the Ottomans and its buildings were used as a shelter by the Cossack pirates. The monastery had an area of 0.6 ha. During the present archaeological season, sondages were carried out in St. John Prodromos Church, which was constructed of cut stones bonded with mortar. Sherds of the 4th – 6th centuries AD and of the 13th – 14th centuries were found. A destroyed Christian grave was documented. Fragmentary frescoes and sherds of the 11th – 14th centuries and of the Hellenistic and Roman periods were found in the altar. The entrance from the Presbyterium to the Diaconicon was documented. A building situated to the north of the church was documented. Sherds of the 13th – 16th centuries were found. Sondages at the eastern and the northern surrounding walls of the monastery were carried out. Imbrices and sherds of the 11th and the 13th – 14th centuries were found. The entrance, 1.30 m wide, in the northern surrounding wall was discovered. The door was single-wing and was opened to the outside. Iron bearings of the axis of the door and iron wedges and fittings were found.

    • Kazimir Popkonstantinov - Department of Archaeology, Veliko Tarnovo University St. Cyril and St. Methodius 
    • Tsonya Drazheva - Regional Museum – Burgas 
    • Rossina Kostova - Department of Archaeology, Veliko Tarnovo University St. Cyril and St. Methodius 



    Research Body

    • Regional Museum – Burgas
    • Veliko Tarnovo University St. Cyril and St. Methodius

    Funding Body


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