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It dates back more than a thousand years, to Byzantine times.It is a unique monastic republic, which, although part of Greece, it is governed by its own local administration.You must always attribute quotations from the SBLGNT.If you quote fewer than 100 verses of the SBLGNT in a single print or electronic work, you can attribute it by simply adding "SBLGNT" after the quotation.The history and fortunes of Mount Athos were turbulent and varied through the centuries.

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However, the first historical reference of the Mountain as a monastic centre is in a passage stating that monks from Athos took part in the Council of 843 AD, convened by Theodora the Byzantine Empress, to discuss the restoration of the Holy Icons.Because of its isolation Mount Athos has remained one of the most unspoiled parts of Greece.The landscape is stunning and wild, with small green valleys and gorges, well wooded peaks interspersed with precipitous ravines and an inaccessible coastline.It occupies the best part of the Athos peninsula in Halkidiki.It consists of a range which runs south-east for thirty miles from Xerxes' Canal, where Xerxes the Persian King cut a canal across the peninsula for his ships to pass.

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