Parish church of St Dorothy, Duszno
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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Parish church of St Dorothy

Duszno

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The Gothic Revival church, situated on the boundary between two villages — the village of Duszno and the village of Wydartowo, the latter dating back to the 19th century — forms an integral part of the villages and their landscape. The brick church replaced an earlier wooden building.

History

The parish in Duszno was most likely founded during the early 15th century, an initiative by the Gniezno Chapter. Written records mention the church for the first time in 1419; the information concerns Nicholas, the contemporary parish-priest. The Liber Beneficiorum by Jan Łaski, published in 1520, contains information about the existence of a parish church of St Dorothy in Duszno.

The original church was a wooden building, reconstructed, possibly following a fire in 1783, on the initiative of Franciszek Ksawery Rydzyński, the curate of Gniezno, who also founded the bell suspended inside the gate bell tower.

The brick church which survives to this day was probably erected in the mid-19th century. In 1865, a bell tower having the form of a gate was built west of the church. The wall around the cemetery may have been erected at the same time.

During World War II, the church served as a storage facility.

In the years 1996-1997, renovation and conservation works were carried out inside the church; the altars, including the painting of St Dorothy located in the top section of the main altar, were also restored. In 1998, the roof covering was replaced and the steeple was renovated.

Description

The Church of St Dorothy is located in the southern part of Duszno, near its boundary with another village — Wydartowo, established in the 19th century. It stands on the east side of the main north-south road. The church is surrounded by a former graveyard enclosed with a brick wall, with a gate bell tower on the west side.

The church, oriented towards the east, is a small building having a rectangular, nearly square floor plan, with an individuated chancel section on the east side. The chancel, narrower than the church, terminates in a semi-hexagon and is adjoined by a rectangular sacristy on the north side. A porch, built on a square plan, is situated on the central axis of the nave, on its south side. The main body of the church is a single-storeyed brick structure set upon a stone socle and covered with a rafter and collar roof. The nave, the chancel, and the porch have gable roofs; the three-sided rear section of the chancel is topped with a three-pitched roof and the sacristy is topped with a shed roof. All roofs are covered with roof tiles. A steeple with a lantern juts out from the nave roof at about one quarter of its length, on the east side of the church.

The brick façades of the church, devoid of ornamentation, are crowned with a frieze made of slanted bricks and a profiled cornice. The front façade is framed by lesenes running up to a triangular gable whose profile is accentuated by a stepped cornice. On the central axis of the façade, preceded by steps, there is a rectangular door opening, topped with a semi-circular lintel; above, in the upper section of the wall, there is an oculus. The windows in the side walls of the nave and in the south wall of the chancel are headed by semi-circular arches.

Inside, there are beamed ceilings with wooden board counter ceilings. The interior fittings come from the earlier wooden church. Its most valuable elements include the main altar having both Rococo and Classicist features, built in 1730 and modified in the late 18th century. The altar, with a sculpture of Christ on the Cross in the centre, is flanked by sculptures of St Peter and St Paul and crowned with a Rococo cartouche incorporating a painting of St Dorothy, surrounded by sculpted angels and putti. Other notable elements of the interior include the two side altars, dating back to the late 18th century.

The area around the church is surrounded by a wall made of field stones, with a small gate in its southern section and a two-storeyed gate-bell tower on the west side. The gate-bell tower, built in 1865, is made of brick and decorated with corner lesenes and a corbelled cornice. The lower section, with its round-arched gate, is separated from the upper section with a frieze made of slanted bricks; above, there are three round-arched openings in which bells are suspended. Two of the bells date back to the 2nd half of the 18th century; one was cast in Toruń in 1767 by Mikołaj Petersilge and the other, founded by bishop Franciszek Ksawery Ryszyński and cast in 1783, is the work of Jan Fryderyk Schlenkermann of Poznań.

The historic monument is open to visitors.

compiled by Anna Dyszkant, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Poznan, 03-11-2014.

Bibliography

  • Katalog Zabytków Sztuki w Polsce, t. 11: Dawne województwo bydgoskie, z. 10: Mogilno, Strzelno, Trzemeszno i okolice, Warszawa 1982, s. 3-5.
  • Karta ewidencyjna, Kościół pw. św. Doroty, oprac. Krzyślak B., Ziętowski S., 2000, Archiwum Wojewódzkiego Urzędu ochrony Zabytków w Poznaniu.

General information

  • Type: church
  • Chronology: ok. 1850 r.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Duszno 2
  • Location: Voivodeship wielkopolskie, district gnieźnieński, commune Trzemeszno - obszar wiejski
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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