Listed in Monasteries/Churches, Sights in Romania

Overview

Văratec Monastery is located in a beautiful natural setting, 12 km from Targu Neamt and 40 km away from Piatra Neamt. It was founded in 1785 by nun Olimpiada – which was a nun at the former skete from Topolita, near Varatec, between years 1781 to 1785.

Monastery church architecture combines elements of traditional Moldavian style of XV-XVI centuries with foreign influences from the XVII-XIX centuries. The church is built of stone and brick, with two round and very tall steeples and bell-shaped roof with polygonal bases. Church facades from Văratec are plain and simple.

Original fresco inside the church at Văratec was completed in 1841 and restored in 1882 in Byzantine style. Church altar screen was sculpted in yew wood and gold rolled; the walls of the monastery were built in the first half of the nineteenth century.

In 1900, a serious fire destroyed the church roof and two wooden towers which were not rebuilt, and a large part of the cells. The complex of buildings that are currently in Văratec monastery was built after the fire of 1900. Only the walls surrounding the monastery, built during 1808-1812, are preserved  in the initial form.

Around the enclosure extends the monastic village composed of traditional peasant houses which are very picturesque. The village has developed over the years following an ingenious plan, designed by folk craftsmen who built here narrow streets, houses and other annexes, which were well placed considering the rugged terrain.

The patrimony of the monastery consists of a large number of authentic decrees, religious objects made of precious metal, old icons, embroidery, carpets and priestly garments, many of which are exhibited in the museum collection established here in 1960. Among the components of the treasure exhibited here there are: icons since XV century from Râşca monastery and the ones since XVI-XVII centuries from Văleni – Piatra Neamt and Topolita, the cross made of cypress wood ​​in 1596, the cross made of olive wood donated in 1852 by George and Maria Hermeziu,the gilded silver chalice donated in 1840 by Safta Brâncoveanu and many others valuable objects.

  • Address
    DN15G, Văratec, Romania
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