St. George with a military standard, Yĭlanlĭ Kilise / Chapel of St. Onuphorius, Chapel 28, Göreme
Original Country
Central Anatolia
Sorting Title
St. George with a military standard, Yĭlanlĭ Kilise / Chapel of St. Onuphorius, Chapel 28, Göreme

St. George with a military standard. He is mounted on a white horse.

Creation Date
Style Genre
Work Type
Format Medium

The artist applied a coat of lime and then painted the fresco straight onto the smoothed rock. Three artists worked on the figural paintings. St. Onuphorius was the first figure to be painted. This first artist sketched the figure very lightly with ochre upon a background of lime-white mixed with grayish black. He used green ochre to paint shadows and the hair of the saint. The painter applied light red ochre for the saint’s flesh. A second artist depicted St. Thomas. He uses dark grey for the background. Part of this painting covers the St. Onuphorius painting. A third artist depicted all the other saints. He used light colors applied in broad smears and he refrained from painting with pure white.

Original Location

Yĭlanlĭ Kilise / Chapel of St. Onuphorius, Chapel 28, Göreme, Cappadocia

Historical Context

Chapel 28 has two traditional names. Yĭlanlĭ Kilise (Dragon or Serpent Church) commemorates the equestrian Saints George and Theodore who according to legend slew the dragon. Chapel of St. Onuphorius honors St. Onuphorius, an ascetic. Images of each of these saints are included in the decorative program of the church.

The chapel is situated inside the main circle of chapels at Göreme. A small, rectangular narthex precedes the chapel. The narthex contains several tombs. The chapel is a barrel-vaulted rectangular room. The entrance to the chapel is located on the north side of the room. On the south side of the room, there is a small, rectangular room which was dug out at a later date. The chapel has a single apse on the east end. The apse lacks a chancel screen; the apse includes a seat and an alter which is connected to the wall.

Patrons and Others

The patron of the chapel is Theodore. His image is included on the south wall.

Current Repository

Open-air Museum of Göreme (Outside of Göreme Center on the road to Üçhisar)

Secondary Sources

Cave monasteries of Byzantine Cappadocia, Byzantine wall painting in Asia Minor, Les églises byzantines de Cappadoce : le programme iconographique de l’abside et de ses abords, Etudes cappadociennes, Sacred art of Cappadocia : Byzantine murals from the 6th to 13th centuries, Les saints et leur sanctuaire à byzance : textes, images et monuments, La Cappadoce médiévale : images et spiritualité, Caves of God : Cappadocia and its churches, Caves of God: the monastic environment of Byzantine Cappadocia, Spätbyzantinische Wandmalerei in den Höhlenkirchen Kappadokiens in der Türkei, The Byzantine wall paintings of Kiliçlar Kilise : aspects of monumental decoration in Cappadocia, Byzantinische Apsisnebenräume : Untersuchung zur Funktion der Apsisnebenräume in den Höhlenkirchen Kappadokiens und in den mittelbyzantinischen Kirchen Konstantinopels, Templonanlagen in den Höhlenkirchen Kappadokiens, The liturgical planning of Byzantine churches in Cappadocia, Kapadokya kaya kiliselerinde üç gün, Upper-Story Chapels Near the Sanctuary in Churches of the Christian East,
The Problem of Provincialism: Byzantine Monasteries in Cappadocia and Monks in South Italy, Survey of the Byzantine Settlement at Çanh Kilise in Cappadocia: Results of the 1995 and 1996 Seasons, Middle and Later Byzantine Wall Painting Methods. A Comparative Study, Apostolic Monasticism at Tokalı Kilise in Cappadocia, Haut Moyen-Age en Cappadoce, Une nouvelle province de l’art byzantin : les églises rupestres de Cappadoce, Les Femmes et le monachisme byzantin : actes du symposium d’Athènes, 28-29 mars 1988 = Women and byzantine monasticism : proceedings of the Athens symposium, 28-29 March 1988, Painted Sources for Female Piety in Medieval Byzantium

Photo Credit
Candice Weddle
Dina Boero
Image of St. George with a military standard, Yĭlanlĭ Kilise / Chapel of St. Onuphorius, Chapel 28, Göreme.