The topography of monasteries of early Byzantian Gaza revisited

Author(s):  Ya.V. Manohin, Belgorod National Research University, Belgorod, Russia,

Issue:  Volume 45, №2

Rubric:  Topical issues of world history

Annotation:  Archaeological monuments in the territory of Gaza have been studied little. This is due to the extreme density of modern buildings, and the difficulties in finding sand-covered monuments, and, finally, the difficult political situation. Today we know of certain monuments related to the Byzantine period on the territory of the Gaza Strip. Hirschfeld divides monasteries into three parts, based on the remoteness of monuments from the city. In the inner circle closest to Gaza, he included 9 monasteries. The middle cir-cle, with a radius of 15-25 km, has 5 monuments. Another 5 are attributed to the outer circle, which is more than 25 km distant from Gaza. It is possible to describe the monasteries of Gaza as complexes con-sisting of a central building that served as cinnamon and the cells of hermits surrounding it. Such a scheme is known to us both in the Skit desert in Egypt, and in the monasteries of the Jordan Valley, for example, the monastery of Gerasim. The residents of the monasteries of Gaza, located in rural areas close to each other and from surrounding settlements, and themselves mostly locals, were involved in worldly life both through monastic institutions (hospitals, hotels, etc.) and as spiritual guides

Keywords:  Early Byzantium, Gaza, Christianity, monasteries, topography

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