All Saints Church - Hagi Enuş

All Saints Church - Hagi Enuş

Monastery / Church


Strada Alexandru Ioan Cuza 21, Craiova 200396, Romania


Located in the central area of Craiova, the All Saints Church - Hagi Enuş is a special architectural complex consisting of the church itself dedicated to all saints and the bell tower which is one of the oldest in the city.

The construction of the church dates back to 1792-1800, according to the Slavonic votive inscription on the stone located on the porch, inscription also rendered on a panel in front of the church: "With the help of the holy and life giving Troiți, this holy Church named the Outside Fair, where All Saints and the Great Martyr Pantelimon are celebrated, is built by Master Dumitrache Sandulache, Master Ion Băcanu, Master Mihai Cojocariu, Master Ion Sapunariu, helped by other foreign masters and merchants, who will be forever remembered, embellishing with painting on the outside as well as on the inside as it can be seen, in the days of enlightened Lord Mihai Constandin Şuţu Voivod and with the blessing of His Holiness Chiriu Chir Filaret, in the days of His Holy Father Bishop Nectarius, leatom .3 .. [broken]. " The text: "helped by priest Vladu and Master Matei Giurca", and the name "Tănasie" are written below the panel’s frame.

Although the historical information written on the votive inscription established that the year 7301 since the creation of the world was the date when the church was built, namely autumn of 1792, a fragment of a wall on the south side of the church marks an older foundation. Thus, the church is considered to be more than 220 years old, additional information being provided by the chronicler Dionisie Eclesiarhul who claimed that the church was built in 1758, initially being a monastery dedicated to All Saints, served by the hieromonks Varlaam and Rafail.

Regarding the votive inscription kept inside the church, numerous sources point out a certain Nicolae Ceausoiu or Ceausescu as founder. It is known that he had an adopted son, Nicola (e), brother or relative of Hagi Enuș Costa Petru (Hagi Enuș, Hagi Enuși, Hagi Ienuși, Ene Nanu, or Nanu Costa Petru), who later would take care of the church and name it. The reasons why this information was omitted from the courtyard information panel are not yet known but it is presumed it is based on the rejection of any possible connection with the dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.

In the eighteenth century, the locals knew the church was dedicated to All Saints as the old monastery was before it, a name that was preserved until 1782. Documents from the beginning of the nineteenth century, mention "The Church from the Outside Fair, dedicated to all the Saints, made by the merchants from the slums", built at the end of the previous century. Thus, alongside with the establishment of the so-called Outside Fair in Craiova’s suburbs, the church also took its name.

It is noted that the main founder of the new church, Nicolae Ceausescu, would have had an adopted son, Nicola (e), son of the Costa Petru, a greek merchant and brother of Hagi Enuş. After Ceausescu’s death, Hagi Enuş helped his brother in the epitropy of the church. This explains the change of the church's name from the Outside Fair, then old the Outside Fair (caused by the relocation of the fair) into the Old Hagiu Fair, the Hagiu Church and later the Hagi Enuş Church. Officially, the name change occurred on July 29th, 1859 when, within the official letter no. 1285 of the Municipal Council of Craiova, the church is called for the first time Hagi Enuş church.

Hagi Enuş was a rich merchant from Craiova and one of the churchwardens of the Madonna Dudu church (at that time Holy Mother from Dudu) and All Saints church, but also guardian of the house of Landlady Smaranda Brăiloiu. Hagi Enuş was also involved in the Revolution of 1821, lending money to Tudor Vladimirescu for weapons expenses. This support, however, was not unselfish, Hagi Enuş aiming to gain favour with the revolutionary hero. But Vladimirescu understood the tricks of the agile merchant, and accused him in one of the articles of the "Demands of the Romanian people" of plundering the country by robbery, sentencing him to expulsion from the country. The decision could not be implemented due to the tragic end of the Revolution leader. Later, Hagi Enuş falls into the people’s disgrace and is obliged to dispose the titles of churchwarden and guardian (April 1824). In the documents issued after 1824, only the "house of the late Hagi Enuş" will be mentioned.

Throughout the 19th century, the church registered numerous damages, the repairs affecting its original appearance. During 1826-1829, works for repairing and painting of the ceiling, the splinter of the church and the repair of the bell-tower (rebuilt with brick from the church) were carried out. On this occasion, the old bell received during the Serbian riot in 1814 from the parish council of the "Archangels Michael and Gavriil" Church in Belgrad was moved to the bell tower.

The "great earthquake" of 1838 also affects the structure and the resistance of the church, damaging the altar, the pulpit and the plaster, which leads to a new fresco painting of the edifice. The church undergoes a new repair process in 1839 and a general renovation and painting between 1855-1856 (founders Hristea Stancovici and Sterie Ioanu). In 1895, a new oil painting was added, while the outer painting was deleted and not restored, and covered with metal-sheet. Over time, the outside of the church became white-gray colored, leading to the name of Grey Church for the place.

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