Theotokos Katholike

Department Archive
Collection Byzantine Research Fund
Reference No. BRF/01/01/13/004
Level Item
Place Gastouni
Dates 1905-1909
Creator Traquair, Mr Ramsay
Scope and Content Door on north side (lintel-jamb mold-various details) - Brickwork patterns. The drawing is entitled in ink: 'S. Mary Katholikos Gastouni Elis'. It is labelled in ink: 'Built up Door on North Side', 'Monogram Forms in the Brickwork'. Further annotation in ink survives.
Further information The church of Theotokos Katholike at present-day Gastouni is a late twelfth-century building on a fairly conventional distyle inscribed cross-in-square plan with dome and a cross-vaulted narthex. The east end of the church terminates in only one apse. The exonarthex and the western elements on the north side are later additions.
The unusually fine cloisonné masonry in the exterior is particularly rich and inventive in brick patterns although worth noting is the almost complete absence of stones and architectural sculpture in the walling. Six glazed ceramic vessels further enliven the exterior while two large brick wheels with radiating spokes decorate the diagonal sides of the east apse. A dentil cornice instead of the usual course runs round the window in the north cross arm.
The interior is decorated with wall-paintings which have been re-painted, according to a surviving inscription, in 1702. The church was a mosque during the Turkish period.
Reference Journal of the Royal Institute of British Architects. 31 (2): 82, fig.31.