Church of St. John The Faster
Saint John (Agios Ioannis) The Faster, is considered to be the greatest church of Aspropirgos. It is placed between Stefani and Mulki, about 2 km southeast of the settlement, on our way to Athens, the land, where it was built, it is considered, from both the tradition and recent findings, to belong to the estate of Pasas Stefan, and that is why the name ‘’Stefani’’ is still the same. Besides, even nowadays, any visitor can see the ruins of this estate. However, the time that this estate became property of Pasas Stefan’s, remains still a mystery. But, if we do accept the fact that the church was built in the late of the 16th century, this area must became his property later, since it was impossible for someone to build a church within a Turkish land. The church is a one- placed and on the way building with a Cross-roof and it exists since the middle of the 16th century and the beginnings of the 17th century. This type of building is a ‘’degenerated’’ type of church with Cross-roof, influenced enough by the Cycladic architecture.
The walls of the church had writings on them. But, the saved wall-paintings, are hard to be discerned, due to the plastering to the bottom of the walls, but also, due to a thick layer of smoke, which has covered some of these. The first wall- painting, at least of the inner sanctuary must be temporary or almost temporary with its erection, while the decoration of the inner arch in the church, has come later. In the meanwhile, two aspects on this subject were expressed. The first aspect supports that, probably the arch was demolished in 1701, when the wall-paintings of the main church were destroyed, and that’s why no layer has been found before. After the destruction, it was renewed, without bringing back the painted decoration, but only the rest of the church. The second aspect on this subject, which is more likely to be valid, supports that the whole church was illustrated, except from the sanctuary, as the painted decoration of the latter had been done earlier, in 1701, as it appears. Later, probably during the Orlovans (1770- 1779), the arch was destroyed and then built again the way it is today. This aspect seems more accurate, because of the form of the arch, on the one hand, and of a graffiti that exists on the flatland of Saint Nicolas (Agiou Nikolaou) on the other hand, where it’s inscribed the following, ‘’1880 ολ(η)κτίσθη’’, and probably it refers to its construction. Lastly, the second aspect also, explains the lack of painted décor in the arch.