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Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra

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Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra

Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra (The Kyiv Cave Monastery) is an Orthodox monastery in-Kyiv. It was founded by St. Anthony of the Caves in the mid-11th century near the village of Berestove in a cave that the future metropolitan of Kyiv, Ilarion, had excavated and lived in until 1051. The first monks excavated more caves and built a church above them. The monastery's first hegumen was Varlaam (to 1057). He was succeeded by St. Theodo-sius of the Caves (ca 1062-74).

The Kyiv princes and boyars generously supported the monastery, donating money, valuables, and land, and building fortifications and churches; some even became monks. Many of the monks were from the educated, upper strata, and the monastery soon became the largest religious and cultural center in Kyiv Rus. St. Theodosius's "Teachings", Nestor the Chronicler's "Story about Borys and Hlib", "Life of Theodosius of the Caves", "Tale of Bygone Years" and the Kyiv Cave Patericon were written there. Foreign works were translated, and books were transcribed and illuminated. Architecture and religious art (icons, mosaic, frescoes) the works of Alimpii, Hryhorii, and others developed there. Many folktales and legends eventually arose about its saintly figures.
The monastery was sacked several times: Each time it was rebuilt, new churches were erected, and the underground tunnels of caves and catacombs expanded.

In 1615 Archimandrite Ye. Plete-netsky established the first printing press in Kyiv at the Kyiv Cave Monastery, which became an important center of publishing in Ukraine. Archimandrite (later Metropolitan) P. Mohyla opened the Kyiv Cave Monastery School, in 1632 It was merged with the Kyiv Epiphany Brotherhood School to form a college (later called Kyiv Mohyla Academy).


 
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