Voroneţ Monastery is one of the most visited Orthodox Christian Monasteries of Moldova, Romania.
Voroneț is a monastery in Romania, located in the town of Gura Humorului, Moldavia. It is one of the famous painted monasteries from southern Bukovina, in Suceava County. Between May and September 1488, Stephen III of Moldavia (known as “Stephen the Great”, in Romanian Ștefan cel Mare) built the Voroneț Monastery (in Romanian Mănăstirea Voroneț) to commemorate the victory at Battle of Vaslui. Often known as the “Sistine Chapel of the East”, the frescoes at Voroneț feature an intense shade of blue known in Romania as “Voroneț blue”. “The exterior walls — including a representation of the Last Judgment on the west wall — were painted in 1547 with a background of vivid cerulean blue. This blue is so vibrant that art historians refer to Voroneț blue the same way they do Titian red.”
The small windows, their rectangular frames of crossed rods and the receding pointed or shouldered arches of the interior doorframes are Gothic. The south and north doors of the exonarthex of 1547 have rectangular frames, which indicate a transition period from Gothic to Renaissance. But, above them, on each wall is a tall window with a flamboyant Gothic arch. The whole west façade is without any openings, which indicates that the intention of the Metropolitan Roșca was from the beginning to reserve it for frescoes.
On the north façade is still visible the original decoration of the church, the rows of ceramic enamelled discs in yellow, brown and green, decorated in relief. These include heraldic motifs, such as the rampant lion and the aurochs’ head of the Moldaviancoat of arms, and creatures inspired by Western European mediaeval literature, such as two-tailed mermaids. The tower is decorated with sixteen tall niches, in four of which are windows. A row of small niches encircles the tower above them. The fragmented roof probably follows the shape of the original roof, which doubtless was made with shingles.
The tomb of the monastery’s first abbot, Saint Daniil the Hermit, is found at the monastery.
The church is one of the Painted churches of northern Moldavia listed in UNESCO’s list of World Heritage sites.