Ο Σωτήρας του ΟιτύλουPart of : Δελτίον της Χριστιανικής Αρχαιολογικής Εταιρείας ; Vol.36, 1995, pages 79-88
The Church of the Saviour (Soter) at Oitylo
In the area below Oitylo on the Mani peninsula stands atwo-columned cross-in-square domed church, of the typecommonly found on the Greek mainland. The churchmeasures 5.50 χ 4.90 m. The ruined porticus which isattached to the west façade was a later construction. Thechurch, dedicated to Christ the Saviour celebrates itsfeast day at Christmas, with a panegyris organized by agroup of families originating from Oitylo. The 5thEphorate of Byzantine Antiquities undertook restorationworks on the monument.The church is built of poros stone. The same material hasbeen used for the slender octagonal drum of the dome,with one narrow window on each side. The placement of ahorizontal poros divides each window in the middle,suggesting a detail that is unique among the monuments ofMani. Likewise, the brick pattern adorning the archeswhich rise above the windows of the drum, i.e. a singlerow of herringbone work split in two parts withconfronting course, consists another unicum for itsplacement on this particular spot of the church's exterior.The columns with their capitals are in second use,originally coming from Roman buildings. The templon isof masonry. The brick decoration of the west façade hasthe form of a single rowed reticulate pattern, which is quitecommon among the Laconian monuments of the yearsaround 1300. It is difficult however to date our church withsuch precision based on this criterion. We would rathersuggest a broader dating in the Late Byzantine Period.The church preserves in the interior remains of wallpaintings executed in different periods. Best preserved isa fragment of the "Man of Sorrows" decorating theprothesis conch, which can be dated in the 15th century.