From the 9th century ecclesiastical architecture was dominated by the type of the cross-in-square church with four columns and dome. This was the crystallisation of existing ideas on the symbolism of the Christian church as a miniature of the Universe.
The upsurge in the building of new churches in Macedonia, and indeed in the rural areas, was due to the normalisation of the political situation. Various architectural types were used, some of which echo Constantinopolitan prototypes, a fact ascertained in the manner of construction as well.
Moreover, several churches were founded by high-ranking state officials who were in direct contact with Constantinople, or even by members of the imperial family (e.g. Ayios Panteleimon at Nerezi).