Its decision to return a 10th century manuscript of the Byzantine period to Greece, which was removed from Mount Athos’ Dionysiou Monastery, announced the Duke University, as reported by Greek Travel Pages (GTP) website, based on a Culture Ministry announcement on Thursday. The announcement came only a few days after the Ministry’s secretary general, Lina Mendoni, visit to Washington DC.
Mendoni praised the American university for its decision while also underlined that this move comes after the return of a Byzantine period gospel from the Getty Museum in September, which was stolen along with the manuscript from the Greek monastery in the 1960s.
During her official visit in the United States, Mendoni met with officials from the Smithsonian Institute, the National Gallery of Art and the National Geographic. In the meetings, the details of the upcoming Greek exhibitions in the US capital were tabled, while Mendoni also presented the Culture Ministry’s work and projects to members of the Greek diaspora, during a discussion organized by the Greek Embassy in Washington and the University of Harvard Center of Greek Studies.
Dionysiou Monastery is one of the twenty self-governing monasteries in Mount Athos and was founded in the 14th century by saint Denys de Korisos, while its library housed 804 manuscripts and more than 4,000 printed books. Today it has a community of some 50 monks.