Agios Georgios and Agios Joannis in Sifones

Close to the small abandoned village of Sífones between Moní and Stavrós Keramotís lies one of the numerous Byzantine churches of Naxos, a double-naved church dedicated to Saint Joannis and Saint George. The simple building dates back to the 10th century AD and is adorned with some very well-preserved murals from the 14th-century: It is one of the many small but remarkable Byzantine churches scattered all over the island to attest to the important role that Naxos played also in the Middle Ages. One aspect that makes all these churches so interesting is the fact that they have barely changed over the course of the centuries that have passed since their construction, and that therefore we see them today still more or less in their original state (except for the generally poor condition of the murals).

view of the abandoned village of Sífones

The church is just below the road; a nice path leads through the fields down into the valley.

By the church stand large downy oaks (Quercus pubescens).

view from above over the church and the valley of Sífones

the southern nave, dedicated to St. Georgios

Some of the wall paintings are very well preserved. In many places you can see that an attempt has made for their preservation.

This painting probably represents Saint Georgios.

The pictures of the saints made with great care.

fish at the feet of one of the saints

The northern ship is dedicated to Saint Joannis. Again, some murals are preserved.

in the dome over the sanctuary

Another large figure is depicted on the side wall.

What a pity that the beautiful, centuries old paintings are damaged!

The church does not have a bell tower, so the bell hangs on an iron bar in front of the church.

And here’s a final view of the church from the street.

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