To the central west of Mount Taygetos, near the village of Giannitsa (contemporary Eleohori), stands the beautiful monastery of Dimiova, dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.

The contemporary monastery was built in the first decades of the 17th century and its name has been referred to as Dimiova, Timiova, Tinova, Dimonovo and Dimanovo. The official name is Dimiova, a name of Slavic origins interpreted in Greek as Crocotopi (a place where wild crocus exists in abundance; the plant is the main ingredient of a yellow pigment called “zaphora”).

Crocuses are still abundant in the area during spring, especially in the woods of the monastery. The church (Catholicon) of the monastery is a cruciform, domed church almost square, without a nave. The frescos are of special interest, dating from 1663, and the Templon (the wall separating the alter from the main body of the church), from 1773.

The monastery’s most valuable treasure is the icon of the Panagia Dimiovitissa, painted in the style of Panagia Glykofilousa and titled the “Hope of Christians”, to which many miracles are attributed. It was considered to be a work of the period of the Iconoclast controversy, namely the 8th and 9th centuries, but historians date it to the 16th and 17th century. Its main characteristic is a scar with dried blood on the Panagia’s head; attributed to a blow by a sharp instrument.

During the reign of Otto (1833-1862) a chemical test on the blood is said to have proved the church’s belief that the wound was valid. The monastery was for men only until 1944 but changed to a monastery for women in 1960 and continues the same tradition to this day.