At Naoussa, the older houses form certain more clustered groups, which are located in the following neighborhoods: Alonia, a lay residential area, and Pouliana and Batania, where we find buildings of a more urban nature and somewhat larger in general. Some of them provide special areas for professional-handcraft activity (mills, water presses, sesame oil presses, etc.) as well as large storage areas.
Two of the parish churches date back to the 19th century (Agios Georgios-Saint George and Panagia-Madonna), while the rest are more recent and were built in place of older buildings.
The Church of Agios Georgios, a three-aisled basilica with a more recent dome, is full of murals on all its surfaces while its screen is ornamented with ten large moveable icons. The Church of Panagia, also a three-aisled basilica, has a beautiful wood-carven screen and a ceiling with large intricate panels. Finally, the Church of Timios Prodromos (Mikros Prodromos) which does not belong to a parish but is a ‘metochi’ to the homonymous monastery, was built in 1715 and is the only monument of the city, which according to tradition survived the destruction of 1822 and stands out for its elevated vestibule, its wooden screen and older icons.
A few more significant, but isolated older public buildings mostly belonging to the early 20th century are found scattered around town. Recorded as such are the school buildings which now accommodate the 1st and 2nd Elementary Schools, the 3rd Elementary School (Galakeia, next to the small temple of the Patron Saint of the City, Osios-Blessed Theophanis), the 4th Elementary School (Sefertzeion) and the Lappeion Gymnasium, all built mostly through donation by wealthy Greeks from abroad.
Furthermore, the belfry of Agios Georgios Church (Saint George, 1869), the Clock Tower (1895), the belfry of the Metamorphose Church (Transfiguration, 1912) and the smaller belfry of Epapante Church (Candlemass, 1915), built from chiselled porous stone, as well as the four, towering, circular factory chimneys, with visible brickwork.
The wonderful municipal park, with its lakes and deeply-shaded lanes is connected, through the sidewalks on the banks of the Arapitsa River, with the area of sacrifice of the women of Naoussa in 1822, the great Stoubani waterfall. On this route the visitor encounters the old workshops and factories, which unfortunately have ceased to operate, and their remnants, now just monuments to the industrial history of our country, awaiting new uses which will reincorporate them into the life of the city.
(Source: A. Oikonomou, Naoussa. The place, the past and the present... Naoussa, 2005)
The old mahala (from the turkish mahalle meaning small neighborhood) Pouliana, even today, has not changed much.
Aside from the slight widening of the road leading from Riga Fereou street to Saint-Sotiris and the opening of Garneta street, from Oikonomidaiika and the old pottery workshop of Smernos “the Shorty” up to Christodoulou Lanara street, it remains as it was.
Without sidewalks, since the Ottoman Empire, but with plenty of cars today, it manages nonetheless to safeguard its quaintness in the midst of progress.
The aristocratic Pouliana has not been an object of particularly good care and treatment, although its houses decorate brilliantly book publications related to our town and its history.
Pouliana’s streets all lead to the river Arapitsa and the beautiful mansions of the left side of Sofroniou, facing the river, thanks to the aesthetics of their residents and their love of beauty, still rest like blossomed gardens on its banks.
The most marriage-related people of Naoussa were residents of Pouliana and Alonia. Typically, each home of groom from Pouliana groom had a bride from Alonia.
The homely Alonia adorned with their airy, modest, feminine presences, the imposing Pouliana.
The entire mahala embraces Saint-Sotiris, with its huge yard full of pine trees, the bell tower, the fountain and the two schools, Sefertzeio and the old female bording school completing the picture of wealth and grandeur.
The houses on the left side of Sophroniou, rising from Batania, have a special feature. Every two or three houses, large or small alleys open up leading to courtyards, which hide other houses.
In this neighborhood there are two of the most important houses of Naoussa: the house of Mouggri and the Mattheo’s mill.
(Source: L. Samara, “Pouliana”, Niaousta,Vol. 97, Οctober-December 2001)
Τhe neighborhood of Alonia, bounded by the streets Ηatzikourkouta, St. Theofanous and Adarton, is a typical example of the architecture of Naoussa.
The houses are usually narrow-fronted, with passages leading from the street into courtyards, where there are often other houses -with a view only to the inner courtyard-, warehouses, stables and other secondary buildings. The wide-fronted houses, which are fewer and lodging the richest families belong typologically to earlier phases. The narrow-fronted ones have resulted from successive divisions of the original property, perpendicular to the axis of the street. The descendants of the original owners share the land, which results in the evolution of family-neighborhood relationships causing the gradual densification of the urban area. From the morphological and typological elements, the simplicity of the facades and the small to medium-sized volumes of constructions, it becomes obvious that the area around the square of Alonia was a popular district in the past as today. The structures have rare openings to the ground floor, which is usually an enclosed courtyard, housing auxiliary uses. Upstairs there are more openings and a lighter construction, with architectural protrusions. On the inner face to the courtyard, there are often semi-outdoor spaces (loggia), while the enclosed courtyard on the ground floor, separated by heavy door panels from the street, communicate freely without walls to the internal communal outdoor space.
(Source: N. Kalogirou, Naoussa: Morphology of the urban tissue and image of the city (19th-20th century), Niaousta, Vol. 30, January-March 1985)
Batania is the district that named after the numerous watersanders (batanes) that existed there; it ran from the bridge of Arapitsa at Sophroniou Street, and ended at the point where we turn for Stoumpanoi and the uphill to Saint-Theologos on the southwest, while on the southeast it went up to the hospital and the sports stadium by secondary streets.
The old bridge that linked Kamena and Batania was made of stone and was constructed by the Turks after the turmoil of the revolution of Naoussa.
The watersander workers were essential to the economic structure of the city, based on woven fabrics for personal use and for trade.
Taking advantage of the force of the water of Arapitsa, they batted the “siaiakia” that the Naoussa housewives weaved at home.
The «siaiakia» was a coarse black woolen cloth. The thread, the “kanoura”, was colored with wallnut peel and was very stable to water-rubbing.
In the watersander, three large wide boards raised one after the other and after beating the woolen cloth stretched onto a canvas in the water, uniting firmly the warp and the weft and becoming solid and resistant.
The residents in Batania were active in the activities of water-rubbing.
Walking from Kamena to Batania, on the right there was the batani of Stauris Kamtsikas and the mill of Makis, who bought it from Euripides Tsiomis. It was a high-tech product of the time, since it could be turned from flour mill could be turned into a sesame mill, depending on the circumstances. The sesame mill of Makis was the best known in Naoussa. The house of Makis, above the mill, stood imposing by the river.
“Batania, with its Saint-Triada, nestled in the lap of mother Arapitsa, with three bridges linking it with the other districts of Naoussa, haven’t lost a bit from their old charm and playful fascination.
The narrow streets, without sidewalks, with their front doors next to each other, appear as if not much time elapsed since all the cattle from Seli passed by and every open door of the neighborhood, closed swiftly, stealing a young animal”.
L. Samara, The Batania and the Saint Triada, Niaousta, Vol. 99-100), April-September 2002)
D. Aghia Paraskevi
The church of Aghia Paraskevi is located in a quiet corner of Naoussa very close to square Alonion. Specifically, the square Alonion through road Guerrilla, you can turn on the street Aghia Paraskevi to find yourself in the churchyard.
Although the church is relatively small, the yard is quite large and has a portion shaped like a small playground (with swings etc). Opposite of the church, one can see the hill with the church of the Prophet Elias.