Monastery complex, Parish Church of St Adalbert and the Monastery of Pauline Fathers, Brdów
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Monastery complex, Parish Church of St Adalbert and the Monastery of Pauline Fathers



The complex, consisting of the Church of St Adalbert and one of the first monasteries of the Pauline Fathers in Poland, is an interesting example of Baroque ecclesiastical architecture in Greater Poland. As the Sanctuary of Our Lady Victorious, it is a local site of Marian devotion. One of its most notable elements is the painting of Mary with the Infant Jesus, regarded as miraculous and traditionally referred to as Our Lady of Brdów. It is traditionally linked to the battle of Grunwald during the war between Poland and the Teutonic Order. It was donated to the church by king Władysław III of Varna.


The village of Brdów was mentioned for the first time in a papal bull of pope Innocent II, issued in 1136 and addressed to Jacob, the archbishop of Gniezno. The first sources mentioning the church in Brdów date back to 1399. In 1436, King Władysław III of Varna invited the Pauline Fathers to Brdów and founded a monastery for them, also endowing them with the task of managing the Brdów parish — an unprecedented move, as during the period in question, it was the dioceses and not the monasteries that performed the duties of parish administrators.

The previous church and the adjoining monastery burned down in 1748. The present Church of St Adalbert the Bishop and Martyr was built in 1758. Most probably, it was designed by an architect called Cochile. In 1790, a tower was added to the church. It was extended upwards through the addition of a fourth storey in 1877, after a fire in 1870. In the years 1913-1914, the church received a side chapel designed by Józef Dziekoński. In 1983, the interior of the church was gutted by fire; it was restored and redecorated in 1986.

The current monastery building was probably erected in the late 17th century and rebuilt in 1758, after a fire which damaged the building in 1748. The monastery was closed and abandoned by the Pauline Fathers in 1819 following the dissolution of the order. From 1827 onwards, the administration of the Brdów parish became the task of the diocese. The monastery was used by the Pauline Fathers again in the years 1860-1863. However, due to their involvement in the January Uprising, they were forced to leave the monastery again in 1864. It was only in 1953 that the Pauline Fathers were able to return to Brdów.


The monastery complex in Brdów is located in the northern part of the village, on the eastern shore of Lake Brdowskie. The church, oriented towards the east, is designed in the Baroque style. It is a brick structure with plastered walls, having one nave and a lower and narrower chancel. The old sacristy adjoins the chancel on the north side and the new sacristy adjoins the chancel on the south side. The building has a number of external buttresses. A four-storeyed tower with a porch is located in the western part of the church. On the second floor of the tower, there is a passage to leading to the adjoining monastery. The Chapel of St Peter, featuring a dome with a lantern, adjoins the church on the south side. The new altar incorporates the painting of Our Lady of Brdów, believed to possess miraculous qualities; it was coronated by Pope John Paul II in the Jasna Góra monastery in Częstochowa in 1983. Legend has it that the painting accompanied Władysław Jagiełło during the battle of Grunwald in 1410.

The Baroque monastery which adjoins the church on the west side is a two-storeyed brick building with plastered walls; built on a rectangular floor plan, it has a gable roof covered with roof tiles. On the central axis of the east façade, there is an access gate topped with a segmental arch. The corridor on the ground floor features a barrel vault resting on arches, whereas the rooms on both levels and the corridor on the first floor have groin vaults.

The complex is surrounded by a wall erected in 1790, incorporating two gates, one on the south side and the other on the east side, topped with broken-line gables adorned with paintings of the Virgin Mary and St Anthony.

The church can be viewed from the outside. Holy Masses are held on Sundays and holidays at 8:00, 10:00, 12:00, and 16:00; on holidays on weekdays: at 8:00, 12:00, and 18:00 (17:00 during winter); and on weekdays: at 7:00 and 18:00 (17:00 during winter).

compiled by Tomasz Łuczak, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Poznan, 18-11-2014.


  • Bednarska L. (red.), Barokowe kościoły Wielkopolski, Poznań 2006, s. 28-29.
  • Bednarska L. (red.), Zabytkowe klasztory w Wielkopolsce, Poznań 2006, s. 30.
  • Łęcki W. (red.), Wielkopolska. Słownik krajoznawczy, Poznań 2002, s. 29.
  • Katalog zabytków sztuki w Polsce, t. 5: Województwo wielkopolskie, z. 8: Powiat kolski, Warszawa 1968, s. 4-5.

General information

  • Type: monastery
  • Chronology: k. XVIII w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Brdów
  • Location: Voivodeship wielkopolskie, district kolski, commune Babiak
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland


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