August 21, 2016

2339, 2696 ROMANIA (Vâlcea) - Cozia Monastery

2696 Holy Trinity Church of the Cozia Monastery

Posted on 01.03.2016, 21.08.2016
Erected between 1386 and 1388 by Mircea the Elder (one of the most important princes of Wallachia, known for its struggle against the expansion of the Ottoman Empire) on the right bank of the river Olt, Cozia Monastery is one of the oldest and most complex historical and art monuments from Romania. The choice of this site can be reasoned by the strategic position of this small depression at the exit of the gorge of Olt, but also by the special beauty of the place.

2339 Cozia Monastery - The votive portrait and
the tomb of the founder Mircea the Elder.

Surrounded by impressive beech forests, orchards and hiding curing waters in the depths of Olt, she is really "the promised land" as Gabriel Protul from Mount Athos commented in 1520. The waves of the river brought sunshine to the walls of the monastery from east, while tirelessly carrying their battle with the mountain separated in two: to the East by the Cozia Mountain, and to the South-West by the Basarab Mountain. The only possible access, by chariot or bull car was through the south.

The fortified cloister dates from the foundation (1388) and is the only in authentic Byzantine style (the Athonite variant) preserved in Romania. Two chapels are incorporated in the side toward the Olt River and their cupolas are reflected in the water, creating one of the most iconic cultural landmarks in Romania. The appearance of the church was modified under Neagoe Basarab (1517), Şerban Cantacuzino and Constantin Brâncoveanu (1707).

In the Great Church, namely in the nave, that has The Holy Trinity as its celebration day, one can see the original paintings. There, on the Western wall, there are paintings that present Mircea the Elder (r. 1386-1418) and his son Mihail (Michael) wearing knight outfits and on the left, one can see the portrait of Şerban Cantacuzino (r. 1678-1688). In the pronaos are the tombs of Mircea the Elder and of the nun Teofana, Michael the Brave’s mother, who became a nun after her son’s death.

About the stamp
On the postcard 2339
The stamp, depicting Viper's Grass (1.00 RON), is part of the series Flowers’ Clock I, about which I wrote here.

On the postcard 2696
The stamp is part of the series Holy Easter 2016, about which I wrote here.

About the postmark on the postcard 2339

On the postcard is a postmark used on May 20, 2013, to mark the anniversary 625 years of documentary attestation of Râmnicu Vâlcea.

Sfânta Mânăstire Cozia - Official website
Cozia Monastery - Romanian Monasteries
Cozia Monastery - Wikipedia

Sender 2339: Adriana Popa (direct swap)
Sent from Râmnicu Vâlcea (Vâlcea / Romania), on 07.01.2014
Sender 2696: Dănuţ Ivănescu
Sent from Călimăneşti (Vâlcea / Romania), on 11.08.2016

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