My street photographs of downtown Athens, and Syndagma square taken on a moody, overcast day in December. The Christmas tree was not too impressive as you can see in the photograph. The decor is a lot more simplier this year than other years.
But, the city looks very beautiful with lit Christmas lights at night as you will see in my next post.
Οι φωτογραφίες του δρόμου μου από το κέντρο της Αθήνας και την πλατεία Συντάγματος τραβηγμένες μια κυκλοθυμική, συννεφιασμένη μέρα του Δεκεμβρίου. Το χριστουγεννιάτικο δέντρο δεν ήταν και πολύ εντυπωσιακό όπως μπορείτε να δείτε στη φωτογραφία. Η διακόσμηση είναι πολύ πιο απλή φέτος από άλλες χρονιές.
Όμως, η πόλη φαίνεται πολύ όμορφη με αναμμένα χριστουγεννιάτικα λαμπάκια το βράδυ όπως θα δείτε στην επόμενη ανάρτησή μου.
The gold has a lot of intricate detail. The incense are the little balls that look like olives above the gold.
The popular telling of the story of the Three kings, also called wise men or magi is that they came from the east bearing their precious gifts for the young Jesus. The gifts were Frankincense, Myrrh and Gold. The Frankincense symbolizes prayer, Myrrh symbolizes suffering and gold symbolizes virtue.
Many don’t know that the gifts still exist and are kept in a vault at the monastery of St Paulos at Mount Athos in Greece. In a rare move the “Timia Dora’ or ‘Honourable Gifts’ as the Orthodox Christians call them, were brought to western Athens to the church of St. Nektarios so that everyone can see them up close. They will be displayed in the church from the 27th until the 31st of this month.
The story of how the ‘Honurable Gifts’ made their way to the Holy Mountain (Mt. Athos) is a perilous one. It is said that The Virgin Mary gave up many relics to the church in Jerusalem where they remained until the year 400 A.D. That year the Byzantine Emperor Arcadius relocated the relics to the city of Constantinople to bless and protect the people and to promote the city. The gifts remained there until the city fell to the Franks in 1204 A.D. There after, for safety reasons, they were taken to the town of Nikaia in Northwestern Asia Minor, the temporary capitol of Byzantium. The gifts would remain there for 60 years. After the crusaders retreated the relics returned to Constantinople until the city fell to the Turks in 1453 A.D.
After the fall of the city, a Christian woman named Mara Brankovic who was the daughter of the King of Serbia and who was married to the Ottoman Sultan Murat II, brought the relics to Mount Athos. At the port she handed over the relics to the monks as as she was not allowed to enter as only men are allowed and only with written permission.