29 October 2011

By 1307 there already existed the nucleus of a dependency in the locality of Ormylia, in Chalcidice. It seems that, originally, the chief function of the metochi was to provide winter accommodation for the Monastery’s sheep. During the last quarter of the 14th century the metochi increased greatly in size as a result of purchases and gifts of property, especially from the aristocratic Devlytzinos and Kavasilas family.

The metochi was dedicated to St Demetrius, and its tower, built shortly before 1330 but in ruins by the end of the 18th century, was located near the village known today as Vatopedi. It was expropriated in 1930 and the refugee village mentioned above was set up in the area. The premises of the metochi, including the buildings dating from 1843-1904, remained in the possession of the Monastery  but were handed over in 1974 to the Monastery of Simonopetra, which used it to set up there the women’s Coenobium of the Annunciation26.

To the east of the metochi of Ormylia and bordering on it is the metochi of Aghios Phokas, consisting of forest and grazing land. Somewhere in its vicinity and by the early 14th century there was a village of Aghios Phokas, which must have been destroyed around the second half of the same century27. The earliest known reference to the metochi dates from 1481. It continues to belong to the Monastery and has an area of around 1,400 hectares.