August 18, 2013

The Church of Panagia Prekla in Skiathos

The Church of Panagia Prekla is located on the beautiful island of Skiathos, within the Castle between the Church of Christ and the Mosque. The name Prekla is probably derived from the Latin preclarus (most glorious). It is dedicated to the Dormition of the Theotokos and was built towards the end of the 16th or the beginning of the 17th century.

The church is described wonderfully by the Skiathian native Alexandros Papadiamantis in his Memories of the 15th of August:

“The church was wonderfully decorated and there were beautiful icons, especially the icon of Panagia Prekla, the gold sculptured icon screen in front of the altar, the chandelier, the silver hanging oil lamps, and the standing bronze candle holders... In the past, before 1821, when the now deserted and ruined town was still inhabited, all the residents of the two parishes would go to the church during the first 15 days of August to hear the Supplications and chants.”

The only thing preserved from the church is the icon of the Dormition which is dated to 1653, and a portion of the cornice dated to 1676, both of which are kept in the Sacred Church of the Three Hierarchs.

The church celebrates on the feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos, but nowadays it has been established to be celebrated on the Sunday following the 15th of August.