Panagia Myrtidiotissa and Panagia Orfani at the Castle of Chora

The imposing church of the Castle of Chora is called Panagia Myrtidiotissa and was built in 1580 by the Venetians. It was a Catholic temple initially dedicated to the “Virgin of the Latin”. In 1806 it was transformed into an orthodox church devoted to Panagia Myrtidiotissa. The icon of Myrtidiotissa was kept in the protected church for fear of being stolen by pirates. In 1842 the icon was returned to the monastery of Myrtidia.

Near the church is the small temple of Panagia Orfani that belongs to the Kalonas family. For nearly 300 years it housed the icon as well as religious items from the monastery of Agarathos located in Iraklio in Crete, when the great island was under Turkish occupation.

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