The first, celebratory issue of Analecta Stagorum et Meteororum aspires to inaugurate new directions in the study of the heritage of the monastic community of Meteora, primarily through interdisciplinary studies on new and lesser-known stubjects.
Its first part, dedicated to history, opens with an article by Brendan Osswald, who attempts an overall assessment of the works and days of Simeon Uroš Palaiologos. This is probably the most extended prosopographical study on the Serbian King of Thessaly, who played an important role in the cultivation of monasticism in Meteora. What is more, Maja Nikolić’s article summons all the known sources and scholarship in order to offer a long-overdue history of the Serbian rule in Thessaly. Her study covers for the first time the whole of this period.
On the other hand, Demetrios Agoritsas transfers us to the Ottoman period with a prosopographical study on the founders of Varlaam Monastery. His cross-disciplinary research on the life of the Apsarades brothers opens a window to the state of Modern Hellenism under the Ottomans, and the role of monasteries in the new reality. Historical studies close with Elif Bayraktar Tellan, who in her article examines the use of the monasteries of Meteora as correctional centers by the Ecumenical Patriarchate during the Ottoman period. Her article is centered on the eighteenth century, a time during which the archival material becomes rich and important changes take place in church administration.
The journal’s section dedicated to art and archaeology opens with the monographic article of Paraskevi Papademetriou, who attributes a sixteenth-century bema door to Theophanes the Cretan. With a careful comparative analysis, the writer contextualizes the specific artifact in relation to other works produced by the same artist that left a lasting mark on the artistic life of continental Greece. What is more, Konstantinos Vapheiades’s article on the work of the same artist has a twofold target: first, the overall assessment of Theophanes’s contribution to visual culture in Meteora, and then, the opening of a discussion on the limits of the concept of “Cretan” art.
To continue, Nikolaos Vryzidis digs into the EBE 1471 Codex for mentions of textiles, in a first attempt to recreate the material culture of Trikke during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The visualization of his research is based on material from the Monastery of the Great Meteoro, as well as other ecclesial and museum collections. Finally, Yuliana Boycheva analyzes an important ensemble of early Russian artifacts, preserved in the Monastery of Tatarna (Evrytania), as a source on history and art history. The main text is complemented by a comprehensive appendix on the Greek and Slavonic inscriptions found in the artifacts by Daria Resh.
The first issue concludes with an article by Elias Tempelis, who chooses to illuminate an unknown aspect of the history of Greek education during the eighteenth century. His study suggests that the re-publishing of a certain series of books on the saints of Thessaly reflected the ideological row between Sevastos Leontiades and Eugenios Voulgaris, two preeminent figures of Greek letters of the time .