The Patriarchy of Peć Monastery started to be built in the second half of the 13th century and the works lasted until the mid 14th century. For centuries it was the seat of the Serbian bishops and patriarchs. From the very start it gathered learned theologians, outstanding writers and artists, who each left testimonies of their work. Since in 1346 the Serbian Archbishop Joanikije was ordained as Patriarch, the monastery was called the Grand Church, but the foreigners name it the Patriarchy of Peć. The monastery comprises three churches – the St Demetrios Church, the Holy Apostles Church and the Holy Virgin Hodegetria (She Who Shows the Way, the Guide) Church.
Frescoes: Ascension, Betrayal of Judas, Tom’s Confession, Peter’s Denial – the Holy Apostles Church; Evangelists, Birth of Christ, Descent into Hades, Ascension – the Holy Virgin Hodegetria Church; Birth of Christ, Descent of the Holy Spirit onto Apostles, St Simeon and St Sava Congregations – St Demetrios Church, the Ancient of Days – in the common narthex.
It is located in the Bistrica river valley, on the outskirts of Metohija, near Peć.
After the fall of Serbia under the Ottoman rule, the Serbian Patriarchy was abandoned, only to be restored in 1557. It survived until 1766, when it was closed once again. renewed in the early 20thcentury, the Serbian Patriarchy has its headquarters in Belgrade, but as the title of the Serbian Patriarch also states the “Archbishop of Peć”, thus the ceremony of installation of the Serbian Patriarch is conducted in both Belgrade and the Patriarchy of Peć.
St Danilo II, Serbian Archbishop, author of the Biographies of the Serbian Kings and Archbishops (Žitija kraljeva i arhiepiskopa srpskih), an important work of the mediaeval literature, Serbian Archbishop and the first Patriarch Joanikije