Roman Catholic filial church of St Catherine, Gościeszowice
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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Roman Catholic filial church of St Catherine

Gościeszowice

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An example of a stone rural church with preserved Gothic features. Along with the wall circumscribing it and a gate, it constitutes an interesting sacred complex. Inside, there is a valuable altarpiece from 1505.

History

The church was erected in the late 13th century. Originally, it comprised a nave and a chancel. In late Middle Ages, a tower was added to the nave from the south. In 16th century, the décor and fittings of the church were enriched: in 1505, an altar by an unknown artist was installed. The artist, because of this work, was called the Altar Master from Gościszowice. In 1592, a music choir was funded by the von Kittlitz family. During the extension works carried out in the 17th century, a sacristy was added, the wooden barrel vault in the chancel was replaced with a painted ceiling, windows were modified, and the original entrance in the southern wall of the chancel was bricked up. Probably at that time, the façades were plastered. In the second half of the 17th century, a tomb chapel of the von Kittlitz family was added. After World War II, the church was renovated a couple of times. During these works, among other things, the roof cladding (wood shingles) was replaced with roof tiles, plasterwork was removed from the façades, interiors were renovated, and in the place of a liquidated cemetery, a lawn was arranged.

Description

The church is located in the heart of the village, on the northern side of the main road, by a crossing leading to Sucha Dolna. It occupies the central place in a grassy square circumscribed by a stone wall with two gates. It is a Gothic, oriented, single-nave building. The nave is adjoined from the east by the chancel, from the south by the tower, and from the north by the chapel, and the chancel is adjoined from the south by a sacristy. All of them were erected on a rectangular floor plan, except for the square tower.

The nave and the lower and narrower chancel are covered with high gable roofs. The cuboid, massive tower is topped with an octagonal tented roof. The uppermost, narrower storey of the tower is separated from the lower sections by a little hip roof. Over the chapel and the sacristy, there are shed roofs. The church, apart from the brick chapel, is built of field stone and bog iron. The upper storey of the tower is made of wood. The chapel is plastered, and other walls are faced with stone. The roofs are covered with beaver tail tiles forming a “lace” pattern. The tower, covered with sheet metal, is an exception. The façades are articulated with window and door openings. Part of the windows has retained their pointed-arch style, some of them have segmental arch in their top sections. They are placed in deep, plastered niches. In the walls of the tower, and in the western wall of the main body, there are surviving slit windows. The entrances to the church lead through two pointed-arch portals - the first one in the western façade, and the second one in the southern façade of the tower. Inside the church, there is a surviving pointed rood arch. The ceilings above the nave and the chancel are covered with painted decoration. The most valuable element of the fittings is the late-Gothic pentaptych from 1505, originating from the workshop of the Altar Master from Gościszowice. In the central part of the altar, there are sculpted figures of the Blessed Virgin Mary with Child, St Catherine and St Margaret, on the obverses of side wings - figures of saints, while on their back side - painted scenes referring to the legend of St Catherine of Alexandria. A pipe organ gallery from the 1593 has survived, as well as a Baroque pulpit and a Rococo tabernacle. On the walls, there are gravestones originating from the 16th and the 17th century.

The building is available all year round and may be visited upon prior appointment.

compiled by Anna Jackiewicz, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Zielona Góra, 10-12-2014.

Bibliography

  • Garbacz K., Przewodnik po zabytkach województwa lubuskiego, t. 2: Powiaty: żarski - żagański - nowosolski - wschowski, Zielona Góra 2012, s. 169-170.
  • Zabytki sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, Warszawa 2006, s. 296.
  • Karta ewidencyjna, Kościół filialny pw. św. Katarzyny, oprac. S. Kowalski, S. Dąbrowski, 1998, Archiwum Wojewódzkiego Urzędu Ochrony Zabytków w Zielonej Górze

General information

  • Type: church
  • Chronology: k. XIII w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Gościeszowice
  • Location: Voivodeship lubuskie, district żagański, commune Niegosławice
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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