blue monastery


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  • Blue monastery

In Verisubani, St. Andria the first church known as the Blue Monastery is located. Its name derived from the blue decoration of the roof (nowadays the blue decoration of the roof is replaced by the blue paint).

According to the legend, St. John the theologian church was established on the very place in the 7th century. The St. Andria Church was built by the former Arch episcope Basil in 1180. This church was destroyed by the Persians in the 16th century and was restored a century later. It belonged to the Gabashvili, after the Russian annexation the Blue Monastery was extremely damaged, this resulted in the annulations of the religious ceremonies and the gun powder ware house was arranged in it.

In 1858 the question of functional revival of this church was propped up. The conclusion submitted by the archpriest Grigol Chrelashvili and by the engineer–technologist Von Bihold at the bureau of Georgia-Imereti in 1860, said that the church required only a minor repair to revive the religious ceremonies in it. The militaries emptied the church only in 1871; very soon after the church had been emptied the restoration was launched with the leadership of archpriest Ioane Baskharov and according to the design of the architect of eparchy Al Chizhov. The church was crowned with the ‘onion’ type Russian dome that was unsuitable for the forms of the Georgian architecture and had changed the face of the church totally. In 1873 the Blue Monastery was blessed for the second time and the liturgy –prayer ceremony was revived.

In the Soviet period, in the 1950s, the saw mill was arranged in the church, and a little later the museum of the medical history. In 1990 the liturgy was still revived and the ‘onion’ type dome by Chizhov was replaced by the ‘tent’ kind one.

The dome of the ‘inscribed cross’ type church is supported with the protruding of the apses and with pair of octagon type columns placed in the west side, the altar is a little protruded from outside.

The church, having been altered many times, has kept its previous face on the eastern façade that is distinguished by its own compositional image: three richly and widely framed windows are placed on the protruding apses, but the middle window is not traditionally placed above, but it is below the side windows.

The construction of a two floored church tower is under progress two meters away the church.

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