Historical monuments nearby

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  • Museum of Jewish Community - IAŞI
  • IAȘI, 21 Cuza Vodă Street
  • 1564-1660
  • IS-II-m-A-03852.01
  • The current church has remained in the same condition as its founders, Prince Vasile Lupu, who commissioned it in 1660, and his son Stefan, left it, with the exception of a few small changes to the steeples over the years. It includes the small stone church of chancellor Ion Golia, from which it gets its name, and whom, in turn, had built his small church in 1564 on the site of an even older church, from which we still have a headstone dated 1515. On the inside, the monument is to this day partly decorated with original frescoes, some, perhaps, going back to the founders Golia and Vasile Lupu.
    We do not know when the first monastic settlement was founded here. The oldest authentic date that can be taken into account is the inscription on the golden cross gifted by Burnar Vornicul and his wife in 7072 (1563-1564). Another record about the existence of this monastery before the year 1600 is the inscription on the locked Gospel given by its founders, the grand chancellor Ion Golia and his wife Ana; the date of 1546 is erroneously read since at this time Ion Golia was not yet a grand chancellor. From this inscription we know that this church was made of stone. In the year 1614, Golia is mentioned in a document as a monastery with its first abbot by the name of Grigorie.
    The building wasn’t completed by Vasile Lupu, but his son Stephen in 1660. From this important description of the church at that time we learn that the tower was older than the church and it may have been made by Ieremia Movilă. An earthquake on the 31st of May 1738, caused such damage to the monument, especially to the towers, that even during the reign of Grigore Ghica Voda repairs were being carried out.
    Because of serious damage, the Church was closed in 1900 for repairs. The restoration only began in 1943 and was completed in 1947. The most important mention of Golia, is made by Archdeacon Paul of Aleppo in 1652, at a time when the church was as Vasile Lupu had made it. Kolia church, as Paul of Aleppo calls it, was not yet finished and yet it made a strong impression on the foreign traveler.
    On the inside, the church has elements of different origins which denote its construction in different eras and the subsequent changes it sustained that have somewhat altered its unity.
    More impressive than all others, Golia Church keeps to the general provisions of the Moldovan churches (the blueprints) but follows the building principles and procedures of Russian architecture - in solving problems regarding the vaulting, the towers, their decorations, and presents a facade directly inspired by Italian Renaissance architecture. The entire church interior is decorated with two centuries worth of valuable paintings.
    Recently it was discovered that underneath the exterior images, dating from the eighteenth century, the porch has early Byzantine paintings probably made at the same time as the church. Some portions of the nave have paintings from the seventeenth century. Elements of sculpture are present with all the exterior decorations, since the church was entirely made of stone (pilaster capitals, door framings, window framings).
    Inside, the tombstones of the founders have sculptures. The stone frame around the entrance from the porch to the nave is carved and above it a Moldavian coat of arms is carved in stone.