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  4. Panagia Chalkeon

Panagia Chalkeon, Thessaloniki

Photo © GFDL. View all images in our Panagia Chalkeon Photo Gallery.
Photo © GFDL.
Photo © GFDL.
Photo © Joshua Treviño.
Photo © Joshua Treviño.
Photo © Joshua Treviño.

Located in a leafy garden, the peaceful Panagia Chalkeon Church (Virgin of the Copper Workers) in Thessaloniki dates from the 11th century and contains an almost complete cycle of frescoes.


The Panagia Chalkeon was founded in 1028 by Christophoros of Lombardy. Its unusual name comes from its use as a mosque for the copperworkers' guild (Kazançilar-Djami) during the Ottoman occupation, from 1430 to 1912. The church was restored in 1934.

What to See

The Panagia Chalkeon has a classic Byzantine cross-in-square plan with three apses on the east end and a nathex on the west end. It is constructed of deep red bricks that have given it a local nickname of "Red Church." It has a rather charming appearance due to its small size and sunken position below modern street level.

The main facade is pleasingly symmetrical, with three tall arches and three domes. The central dome is supported on an octagonal drum and the cross-arms have triangular pediments.

Inside is a nearly complete cycle of 11th-century Byzantine frescoes, some of which seem to be inspired by the mosaics of the Agia Sophia. In the dome is the Ascension of Christ and the narthex depicts the Last Judgment.

Quick Facts on Panagia Chalkeon

Site Information
Names:Panagia Chalkeon; Panagia Chalkeon, Thessaloniki
Faiths:Christianity; Greek Orthodox
Feat:Byzantine Frescoes; Change of Religion
Visitor and Contact Information
Location:Thessaloniki, Greece
Coordinates:40.636844° N, 22.943857° E  (view on Google Maps)
Lodging:View hotels near this location
Note: This information was accurate when first published and we do our best to keep it updated, but details such as opening hours can change without notice. To avoid disappointment, please check with the site directly before making a special trip.

Map of Panagia Chalkeon

Below is a location map and aerial view of Panagia Chalkeon. Using the buttons on the left (or the wheel on your mouse), you can zoom in for a closer look, or zoom out to get your bearings. To move around, click and drag the map with your mouse.


  1. Sherry Marker and James Pettifer, Blue Guide Greece: The Mainland, 7th ed. (W.W. Norton, 2006), 604-05.
  2. Thessaloniki's Byzantine churches - The Rough Guide to Greece
  3. Panagia Chalkeon (Virgin of the Copper Workers) - Frommer's Greece

More Information

Article Info

Title:Panagia Chalkeon, Thessaloniki
Author:Holly Hayes
Last updated:10/23/2009
Link code:<a href="http://www.sacred-destinations.com/greece/thessaloniki-panagia-chalkeon/thessaloniki-agia-sophia">Panagia Chalkeon, Thessaloniki</a>