Trabzon Sumela Monastery

The monastery dedicated to the Virgin Mary is told to take its name from the word “Melá” meaning "black”. Although this name is considered to come from the dark-colored Karadağlar where the monastery was established, the word Sumela here can be associated with the black color in the depiction of Mary. As emphasized by the famous historian J. P. Fallmeyer during his visit to the area (1790-1861), this name is likely to be based on the fact that the color is dark and is a very deep black that it cannot even be identified. In the Georgian art of painting, it is know that some Mary icons were made and spread under the name black Madonna in the art world of XII. Century.

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Amazed by the mysteriousness of the placeI visited Sumela few weeks ago and I am still remembering its mysterious beauty. Everything about the place, the spectacular nature and the monastery itself with its out- of- this- world frescoes was memorable.

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