Host Country Studies Trip to the Center for Byzantine Culture Justinianus, in Chalkidiki

Procopius of Caesarea, the prominent Byzantine historian of the 6th century, writes in his book, Buildings of Justinian, how the great Emperor brought security and prosperity to the peninsula of Kassandra in Chalkidiki, by building a Defensive Wall and 21 Towers along the area of the ancient Doric city of Potidaia and the canal of Kassandra.

“Emperor Justinian, says the Byzantinologist Dr. Ioannis Tavlakis, is an important historical figure for Chalkidiki. Naming our new Center for Byzantine Culture Justinianus after him, seemed like the only honorable thing to do.

On the 8th of October all Pinewood Elementary School students had their first Host Country Studies trip to the Center for Byzantine Culture Justinianus, located on the premises of an old 19th century Athonite Monastic Dependency. We made arrangements to attend a special Educational Program on Art Conservation in the Open Center for the Conservation of Byzantine Antiquities. It was amazing! We saw three open Labs for the Conservation of Byzantine Antiquities that cover the following main categories: manuscripts, icons and ceramics. We were able to watch live the process of conservation by the specialized personnel of the Museum, and discuss details and questions with our assigned Museum Guide.

The day was full of interesting information, and the Manuscript Conservation Lab was voted by all as the best experience of the trip!

Amalia Spiliakou
Host Country Studies Coordinator