Nipson anomemata me monan opsin

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ΝΙΨΟΝ ΑΝΟΜΗΜΑΤΑ ΜΗ ΜΟΝΑΝ ΟΨΙΝ (meaning "Wash the sins, not only the face").

Nipson anomēmata mē monan opsin (Greek: Νίψον ἀνομήματα, μὴ μόναν ὄψιν), meaning "Wash the sins, not only the face,"[1] or "Wash my transgressions, not only my face,"[2] is a Greek palindrome[fn 1] which was inscribed upon a holy water font outside the church of Hagia Sophia in Constantinople:[3]

The phrase is attributed to Saint Gregory of Nazianzus.[2]

The inscription can also be found in the following places:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The Romanization is not a palindrome because the Greek letter ψ (psi) is transcribed by the digraph ps. The modern diacritics, which are not symmetrical, are usually omitted from inscriptions of the sentence.


  1. ^ Barry J. Blake, Secret Language: Codes, Tricks, Spies, Thieves, and Symbols, Oxford University Press, 2010, ISBN 0-19-957928-8, p. 15.
  2. ^ a b Alex Preminger, Terry V.F. Brogan, and Frank J. Warnke, The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics, 3rd ed., Princeton University Press, 1993, ISBN 0-691-02123-6, p. 874.
  3. ^ R. Langford-James, A Dictionary of the Eastern Orthodox Church, Ayer Publishing, ISBN 0-8337-5047-X, p. 61.
  4. ^ "< palindromo > ... Wash the sins, not only the face | Flickr - Photo Sharing!". Flickr. 2012-07-20. Retrieved 2013-10-01.