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Studion (Studiu)


Studion (Studiu) was the most important monastery of Byzantine Constantinople. It was situated in the western part of the city not far from the Golden Gates. The Roman consul, Studios, after whom it was named, founded it in 463 and dedicated its church to St. John the Baptist. In 798 the monks from the newly founded (781) monastery of Saccoudion, called Acoemetae (sleepless), being devoted to perpetual prayer, took refuge from the Saracens in Studion and, under the leadership of the Abbot Plato and his nephew St. theodore the studite, quickly raised its membership to 700.

Theodore blended the basic cenobitic rule of St. basil with Palestinian spirituality and liturgical practice to produce a model of cenobitic monastic rule that found its way to mount athos; from there into Russia through alexius the studite (102543); and thence into the whole of Slav monasticism. A fragment of this typikon, or rule, has been preserved [Patrologia Graeca, ed. j. p. migne, 161 v. (Paris 185766) 99:170320]. Theodore also established schools of manuscript copyists famous for their calligraphy. From the 8th to the 11th centuries the monks of Studion produced a wealth of liturgical hymns that are still used throughout the byzantine lit urgy. Studion during the rule of the Iconoclast (see icon oclasm) emperors stood as the unflinching protector of icon veneration. Many of the monks laid down their lives for this. nicetas stethatos, a famous Studite monk of the 11th century, became known for his polemical and theological writings against the Latins.

In 1204 the monastery was destroyed by the Crusaders but was rebuilt in 1290, only to be destroyed again during the sack of the city by the Turks in 1453. Today the only parts of the monastery still standing are remnants of the Church of St. John the Baptist, which form part of a Turkish mosque.

Bibliography: e. marin, De Studio coenobio (Paris 1897). e. spuler, Die Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart 3 7 v. (Tübingen 195765) 6:430. h. g. beck, Kirche und theologische Literatur im byzantinischen Reich (Munich 1959) 127, 209, 491496.

[g. a. maloney]

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