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Gothic Churches Trail

Gothic style in art and architecture appeared in France in XII century as a direct successor of Romanesque style. Thanks to new constructional solutions it was possible to leave the rules of constructing buildings used until then, and to create figures of a new type. After heavy Romanesque buildings the time had come for soaring and slender constructions of Gothic style. 

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1. St. Elisabeth’s Church, Elżbietańska Street 1 (2/10)

St. Elisabeth's Church
St. Elisabeth's Church
Fot. http://www.elzbieta.gdansk.pl/

Concededly the construction of the small Saint Elisabeth’s Church was finished in 1417, but its history is connected with St. Elisabeth’s Asylum that existed here before. It is good to remember that asylums for, among others, lepers, were reared up on the outskirts of Medieval towns. This means that this place, today located in the very centre of Gdańsk, was once its periphery. After some years of work, the asylum was converted into a hospital and the famous Grand Master of the Teutonic Order Konrad von Jungingen gave his permission to expand the facility by adding a sacral building. A brick church was therefore built, with stellar vault, one aisle and a tower. The church’s presbytery (a part for priests with an altar in its central part) was connected with the hospital. Thanks to it patients that were unable to move from their beds could participate in masses. An orphanage was also a part of the complex, but it did not prevail.

In 1945 the building was completely burned and all its decor destroyed. During the postwar years the complex was rebuilt by Pallottines that today reside in the baroque building of the former hospital. After reconstruction, the interior of the Gothic church gained a modern decor. It is interesting that the tower of St. Elisabeth’s Church had once had two bells, but as the vibrations they caused were dangerous to the construction of the building, they were removed.

 

How to access point 2:

Right behind St. Elisabeth’s Church there is your next destination. The best way to get there is to go along a narrow cobbled street on the right side of the church.


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