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The Gallery - Trees

This week's Gallery prompt is an interesting one... Trees.
Back in December we visited Profit Elias' 'the Church on the hill' in nearby Protaras.  There we found these amazing 'tree memorials'.

At first glance it could appear that they are covered in litter but on closer inspection I discovered they are tributes to lost loved ones. This is what I assume anyway, as I have been unable to find any more information about them.

There are a wide variety of things tied to the trees, empty plastic bottles with rolled up paper in them, laminated letters and photos, and lots and lots of bits of cloth. I spent ages (well, as much time as possible whilst holding onto a toddler that doesn't find it all that interesting!) looking at them all and reading the tributes. 

I've never heard of this practise before, I don't know if it's unique to Cyprus or done in Greece as well - if anyone knows please let me know!


  1. looks like the most amazing setting.
    I have seen something similar around West Country sites, like special springs etc (pre-Christian, I think) and it seems similar to prayer flags in Bhudism. Maybe different religions have different versions of a similar practice.

  2. I remember seeing those trees in Cyprus (or was it Greece!?) , which I has forgotten about until I saw your post. I thoughtnthey were called hanky trees but could be wrong! x

  3. Bet you were tired after walking up all those steps...but well worth it eh?

  4. Oh, this is just lovely and how very sentimental. I went to Protaras in June 1997 and had a lovely holiday in an apartment.

    CJ xx

  5. Tara has just tweeted about your post so I came over to see. Very unusual and hope someone can shed light on whether they appear anywhere else.

  6. I saw one of these at a very old church in Cyprus. I thought each offering was a prayer rather than a memorial. I've got the tourist guide from it somewhere. I will try to hunt it out.

  7. Ah, that would make sense. I was just guessing really as I couldn't find any information on it.

  8. Could be, I've tried to find out but for once Google let me down!

  9. It was a prayer tree at the Agia Solomoni Catacomb Church in Pathos. That might give you a better googling chance of finding some more information about the history of it all. The fact that it is catacombs and sometimes they are called memory trees maybe these are prayers for the dead, so a memorial would be right. I'm sure I knew the history of it once, its driving me nuts tonight but I know a man who will know the answer. I'll ask him when I see him, thank you for reviving some lovely memories for me today. x

  10. Ah, thank you, I will go and have a look. Glad you enjoyed the post.


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