Lake Tana Monasteries
There are 37 islands that are scattered about the surface of Lake Tana, out of which some 20 shelter churches and monasteries of immense historical and cultural interest. These churches are decorated with beautiful paintings and house innumerable treasures. Because of their isolation they were used to store art treasures and religious relics from all parts of the country.
Access for some of the churches is closed to women, although they are
allowed to land on the banks of the island but not permitted to proceed
Kebran Gabriel: is renowned for a magnificent manuscript to the Four Gospels which is believed to date back to at least the late fourteenth or early fifteenth century.
Ura Kidane Mehret: is more decorative with a huge, conical thatched roof is painted with scenes from Biblical lore.
Daga Istifanos: is considered one of the most sacred on Lake Tana, and said to have served as a temporary hiding place for the Ark of the Covenant. On this stands the church of Saint Stifanos which houses the Holly Madonna painted around 1434. The real historic interest lies in its treasury where there are glass-sided coffins containing the mummified remains of several of the former emperors of Ethiopia.
Tana Cherkos: this ancient monastery is found on the eastern
shore of Lake Tana.
|Acknowledgement: This web site contains some excerpts from the various publications of the Ethiopian Tourism Commission.
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|Last modified: Aug 28, 2008© Copyright 2006 Dinknesh Ethiopia Tour. All rights reserved.|