The Monasteries in Bulgaria - Bulgarian Orthodox Monastery Guide!


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German Monastery "St. Ivan Rilski"

The German monastery is located in the western skirts of the Lozen mountain of the Ihtiman Sredna gora mountain". It is about 3 km to the south-east of the village of German near Sofia.The Pancharevo lake is nearby. The monastery was declared a monument of culture. Men`s, Patron Saint's day on 19 October.


The monastery was founded in the 10th century and is the oldest of the group of monasteries "Sofia Mala Sveta Gora", being also one of the oldest Bulgarian monasteries. During the Ottoman rule it was destroyed and restored many times. Since the 7th century the monastery has become a center of literary activities, a proof for which is the famous German miscellany by grammarian Nikola, kept in the National library "St.St Cyril and Methodius". At the beginning of the 19th century the monastery was restored and nowadays functions regularly as a convent of the Bulgarian Zografski monastery "St. Georgi" in the Mount Athos.

The German monastery is a complex including a church - one-nef, on-apse, without a cupola, with a narthex, and residential and farm buildings. Valuable icons could be seen in the iconostasis of the church, painted by Stanislav Dospevski. The mural paintings were made later by the students of professor Lyuben Prashkov. In the yard of the monastery there are redwood trees, planted by king Ferdinand and king Boris III, who are monastery's donors. A little further to the north the remnants of the German ruins of an ancient town could be seen.

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