The Karpino Monastery, with its main church dedicated to The Entry of The Most Holy Theotokos into the Temple, is situated near the village Orah, near Kumanovo.
The monastery was founded in the 14 century by the Tsar Stefan Dushan’s brother-in-law – Deyan the Sebastocrator. The monastery has been renewed in the 19 century.
The church dates back to 1592, when the first and original frescoes were painted. The original frescoes have been covered with new ones with the reconstruction of the church, in 1893.
During World War II, the monastery hospices have been severely demolished.
Karpino as a scripture center
The Scripture School dates back to the 16 century. According to the Institute of Macedonian Literature, the monastery contained over 300 monks and was considered to be the spiritual and cultural heart of the region. The original manuscripts, which are now to be found in Moscow, Sofia and Belgrade, testify to the existence of a monastery school.
The most important literary works are considered to be the Karpino Gospel and Apostle with irmologion, which are now to be found in Moscow. There are 11 parchment works, but also paper ones, such as gospels, apostles, and psalters.
The Karpino Gospel dates back to the XIII century. It consists of 168 parchment pages, written in Cyrillic alphabet. The illustration is rich and diverse, containing initials with teratological, vegetal or geometrical elements. According to its content, the Karpino Gospel is a complete Evangeliary, with Gospel reading for each day of the year, arranged according to the order of the church year, starting from Easter. It also contains a synaxarion.
The Karpino Gospel is one of the manuscripts of northern Macedonia that are related to the Karpino Apostle (chronologically linked to a same period, but of a different writer) and to a fragment of Irmologion (text of later period, of two writers). As a codex of archaic type (according to the order of the stories), it is of a great importance for the translation of the Gospel, and it is among the most remarkable South Slavic gospel manuscripts. Today, it is held in Moscow, GIM, collection Khludov 28 I 101.