Although it is not the oldest preserved Serbian church, Studenica is called “the Mother of all the Serbian churches”. The monastery is dedicated to the Presentation of the Holy Virgin and was built by the “father” of the Serbian people – the Grand Prince Stefan Nemanja. When Studenica was completed in 1196, Nemanja relinquished the throne to his son, Stefan The First-Crowned, and then took the monastic vows and adopted the name Simeon. After Nemanja’s death in 1208, over his remains, St Sava made peace between Stefan and Vukan, the quarrelled brothers. Under Sava’s watchful eye, Studenica became a cultural and spiritual centre of the Serbs, where the people established their Orthodox faith. Sava wrote a Typikon for the monastery (a book of rules) and its introductory part contains a biography of St Simeon the Myrrh-Streamer.
RELIGION AND TRADITION
Studenica is the place where the remains of St Simeon the Myrrh-Streamer (Stefan Nemanja), his wife, St Anastasia, and his son, St Simon (Stefan The First-Crowned).
The Studenica frescoes are the top of the Byzantine wall painting. Crucifixion is one of the most beautiful frescoes not only in Serbia, but in the world as well.
It is situated between Kraljevo and Raška. In 1989, Studenica Monastery became the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In the 13th century, King Milutin built the so-called King’s Church beside the Holy Virgin’s Church, dedicated to St Joachim and Anne (parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary), and a small St Nicholas’ Church, Nikoljača. Like all other Serbian holy places, Studenica was damaged in the Turkish times and thorough restoration was conducted in the 19th century, in the period of the restoration of the Serbian state.
Stefan Nemanja (St Simeon the Myrrh-Streamer), Ana (St Anastasia), St Sava, Stefan The First-Crowned (St Simon), Holy King Milutin.