Gate of Agios Ioannis (St. John)

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Its construction having been launched at the time of Grand Master Antoine Fluvian (1421-1437), this Gate, located in the southern flank of the Medieval City, was completed under the rule of Grand Master De Milly (1454-1461). A bilingual inscription embedded right above this Gate heralds the completion of works on this fortification project, on the 20th of August 1457, “Overseen by Foreman Manouïl Kountis”. As a matter of fact, these fortifications bare more than one resemblance to the Krak des Chevaliers Castle in Syria. The Bastion of Provence, aka Bastion of St. John used to protect the town right at the end of the road that used to connect the town of Rhodes to the town of Lindos, along the island’s east coast. The bulky boulders used for the construction of this project are believed to originate from an ancient construction in that same area.
A series of extensive interventions to the original structure of the fortifications were commissioned by Grand Master Pierre d’Aubusson (1476-1503) in the wake of the Ottoman siege, in 1480. The addition of one more bastion and the deepening of the moat were commissioned by Grand Master d’Aubusson, hence the blazon on both such items. A series of supplementary fortification works were also undertaken upon initiatives by Grand Master Fabrizio del Carretto (1513-1521). In the lower part of the fold-form gothic frame embedded above the gate, there are featured the coats of arms of the Order of St. John as well as of the House of d’Aubusson, together with an effigy – still visible, despite the tear and wear – of St. John the Baptist, clad in branches and leaves. The Gate of St. John is also locally designated as “The Koskinou Gate” or “Red Gate”.

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Gate of Agios Ioannis (St. John)
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