Church of Saint Simeon Stylites
|Church of Saint Simeon Stylites
كنيسة مار سمعان العمودي
Overview of the complex
|Location||Mount Simeon, Aleppo Governorate, Syria|
|Year consecrated||475 AD|
|Architectural style||Byzantine architecture|
The Church of Saint Simeon Stylites (Arabic: كنيسة مار سمعان العمودي Kanīsat Mār Simʿān el-ʿAmūdī) is a historical building located about 30 km (19 mi) northwest of Aleppo, Syria. It is one of the oldest surviving Byzantine churches, dating back to the 5th century. Built on the site of the pillar of St. Simeon Stylites, a famed hermit monk, the church is popularly known as either Qalaat Semaan (Arabic: قلعة سمعان Qalʿat Simʿān), the 'Fortress of Simeon', or Deir Semaan (Arabic: دير سمعان Dayr Simʿān), the 'Monastery of Simeon'.
As of June 2011, the Church and surrounding village was designated by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as part of the "Ancient Villages of Northern Syria", a World Heritage Site.
The Church was held by Islamist extremist groups (including Islamic State) who are opposed to reverence for and existence of shrines and holy sites, both Muslim and Christian, raising concerns for its continued existence. On 28 May 2015, the church was captured by the Kurdish YPG/YPJ with apparently little damage. On 12 May 2016, the church was heavily damaged in an air strike.
- "Ancient Villages of Northern Syria". UNESCO. Retrieved 14 July 2011.
- "Director-General of UNESCO deplores severe damage at Church of Saint Simeon, in northern Syria". UNESCO. Retrieved 11 August 2016.
- Gary Vikan, Byzantine Pilgrimage Art (Dumbarton Oaks Papers, 1982), 8–9.
- Simeon Citadel and Dead Cities, Suggestion to have Saint Simeon Stylites recognized as a UNESCO world heritage site, in 2006, as part of "Simeon Citadel and Dead Cities"-project.
- "St. Simeon Church." Syria Gate (accessed 2008).
- Sacred Destinations
- Weitzmann, Kurt, ed., Age of spirituality: late antique and early Christian art, third to seventh century, no. 590, 1979, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, ISBN 9780870991790
Media related to Church of Saint Simeon Stylites at Wikimedia Commons
- Gatier, P.; T. Sinclair; M. Ballance; R. Warner; R. Talbert; T. Elliott; S. Gillies. "Places: 658606 (Symeon, Mon.)". Pleiades. Retrieved March 8, 2012.