2 February 2019 – 14:30
2 February 2019 – 00:00
Since the time it was first constructed, the St. Nicholas Church has gone through several stages of re-construction and repair as a result of natural disasters and attacks. While the first construction phase of the church was the basilica, which is believed to have been built over the Tomb of St. Nicholas in the 6th century, the last stage was the repairs carried out during the 19th century. Emergency precautions were taken with minor interventions in the 20th century. The limited number of churches in Anatolia and the Byzantine capital Constantinople featuring wall paintings increases the importance of the wall paintings found in the St. Nicholas Church in Myra/Demre. The city of Myra was the metropolis of the Lycian region from 5th century B.C.E. until the late-14th century A.D. In addition to its commercial and economic importance, the reason why Myra was chosen as the metropolis, it was also where St. Nicholas lived, died and was buried.
The excavation studies continued by directorate of Prof. Dr. S. Yıldız Ötüken Lecturer at Hacettepe University, Department of Art History between 1989 and 2009. Since 2012, the excavations have been carried out from the same university by Prof. Dr. Sema Doğan. Architectural findings have revealed that the church and its annex buildings were part of a monastery in the 11th century. Structures, architectural and liturgical stone elements and minor findings uncovered in the excavations shed light on the history of the church.