Parish church of St Peter and St Paul and mausoleum, Bożków
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Parish church of St Peter and St Paul and mausoleum

Bożków

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The church in Bożków is a building with an outstanding artistic value. It represents the more modern iteration of ecclesiastical architecture of the Kłodzko County from the late 17th and early 18th century. Its manorial character, the presence of a tomb chapel and the brick organ gallery all set it apart from the typical, rural Baroque churches of the Kłodzko Region.

History

The first mentions of the village of Bożków in written sources date back to 1348, with the local parish church being first referred to in 1355. During the Reformation, before 1559, the church was taken over by the Protestants, with the Catholic Church regaining control of the parish in 1623. In years 1704-1708 the church was demolished and replaced by the existing structure at the initiative of the erstwhile owner of the surrounding lands, Johann Franz von Goetzen. The church was designed on an elongated, cruciform plan resulting from the combination of both an elongated main body and a small pseudo-transept formed by a pair of chapels situated on both sides of the nave. The church featured a single tower, its chancel and the nave were covered by a common roof, while the annex contained the sacristy and a patrons’ gallery on the first-floor level. The chancel was adjoined by the tomb chapel of the von Goetzen comital family, designed on a central plan. The interior of the church is partitioned using well-proportioned architectural accents. The nave incorporated a brick pipe organ gallery - a rare feature among the rural Baroque churches of the Kłodzko Region. In general, the interior of the church was sumptuous and lavish, which - along with the presence of a coat of arms and an ornate portal - lends the entire design the appearance of a manorial church. The church was erected during the final phase of the Early Baroque era, its design incorporating a number of features characteristic for the period, including the simple, compact outline, the typical spatial layout, the chancel designed in the form of an apse, the organ gallery supported by columns, the architectural framing and pilasters, the windows topped with basket-handle arches as well as a typical Early Baroque portal. However, the church also featured a number of novel solutions, including the positioning of the windows in the upper parts of the façade as well as the use of decorative architectural framing with inverted rounded corners. As a result, the church in Bożków may now be considered as representative of the more modern strand of ecclesiastical architecture of the Kłodzko County during the late 17th and early 18th century, much like the churches in →Wilkanowie (1697-1701), →Lądku Zdroju (1692-1701), →Nowej Wsi (designed in 1702), →Lesicy (1705) or →Goworowie (1711). During the 19th century, the church was restored, with some of its individual sections undergoing a redesign. Somewhere around the year 1820, the Baroque tomb chapel was converted into a mausoleum for the von Magnis comital family and was subsequently extended in the years 1880-1887 on the basis of the design produced by E. Berger, the architect working for the von Magnis family, with the new section of the chapel combining both Renaissance Revival and Neoclassicist influences.

Description

The church, oriented towards the east, is located in the centre of the village, opposite the palace, standing on a platform reinforced by a retaining wall and linked with an arched bridge which spans the watercourse below. The church is a brick and stone structure, its walls covered with plaster; it features a single tower and was designed on an elongated cruciform floor plan with a semi-circular chancel. The main body of the church is covered with a gable roof surmounted by a steeple, with the four-storey, quadrangular tower featuring a bulbous cupola with a roof lantern. The façades are adorned with decorative framing and profiled cornices, with the upper sections of the tower being accentuated with pilasters, segments of entablature as well as a profiled crowning cornice. The windows are framed by plasterwork surrounds. The top section of the stone entrance portal incorporates the von Goetzen family crest. The interior of the church is enlivened by blind windows topped with semicircular arches as well as elaborate wall articulation. The nave features a built-in, brick pipe organ gallery with a groin vault below, the entire structure being supported by Tuscan columns made of stone. The nave ceiling takes the form of a barrel vault with lunettes, supported by structural arches. The Magnis family mausoleum, designed on a central plan, is circular in shape and is covered with a dome topped with a roof lantern. The façades are solid structures with no windows whatsoever, topped with a profiled cornice. The interior walls are partitioned by pilasters supporting an entablature and a polychromed dome adorned with a painted portrayal of a starlit sky. In the middle of the mausoleum lies a cast iron sarcophagus, with a marble bust of Anton Aleksander von Magnis, created by a Berlin-based sculptor Rauch, standing inside a niche positioned directly above. There is also a cast iron memorial plaque dedicated to the count’s children and adorned with the symbol of ten stars. The mausoleum can be accessed through a decorative wooden door with iron fittings, located in the chancel of the church. Above the doorway there are coats of arms of the von Goetzen and von Magnis families. The new section of the mausoleum designed as an arcaded, single-bay portico, adjoins the old mausoleum to the west. The portico-shaped section features a sophisticated architectural articulation and a decorative wrought iron grillwork designed to prevent unauthorised access; the columns support the sail vault above, with the entire structure being topped with a flat roof. This section of the mausoleum features a marble figure of the Virgin Mary, created by Professor Adolf Wilhelm Walter from Dresden. The interior fixtures and fittings of the church originate mostly from the 18th century and include architectural altarpieces, a boat-shaped pulpit (L. W. Jaschke of Bardo, 1760), a baptismal font and a pipe organ casing.

The building is available all year round; interior tours upon prior telephone appointment.

compiled by Iwona Rybka-Ceglecka, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Wrocław, 28-08-2015.

Bibliography

  • Bach A., Kirchen - Urkundliche Kirchen-Geschichte der Grafschaft Glatz von der Uhrzeit bis auf unsere Tage, Breslau 1841.
  • Berger A., Eine Übersicht über die Pfarreien und Kuratien der Grafschaft Glatz betreffend die Zeit von 1841-1946, Kirchlengen, Kreis Herford 1961.
  • Brzezicki S., Nielsen Ch., Grajewski G., Popp D. (ed.), Zabytki sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, Wrocław 2006.
  • Hoffmann J., Goldwiese, Kurze Geschichte der kath. Pfarreien des Kreises Neurode, Eckersdorf, Neuroder Heimatblätter 1925.
  • Kögler J., Historisch-topographische Beschreibung der in der Grafschaft Glatz gelegenen Herrschaft Eckersdorf von...[1805], Vierteljahrschrift für Geschichte und Heimatkunde der Grafschaft Glatz, Bd. III, 1883/4.

General information

  • Type: church
  • Chronology: pocz. XVIII w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Bożków
  • Location: Voivodeship dolnośląskie, district kłodzki, commune Nowa Ruda
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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