All Saints Cemetery Church, Jemielnica
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All Saints Cemetery Church

Jemielnica

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This is the first parish church in Jemielnica built in the Gothic style. The chancel and rood beam feature some Gothic polychromy of the 3rd quarter of the 15th century. The church also has a very valuable late Renaissance and Baroque fittings (23 items registered in the register of movable monuments).

History

Today's church (originally dedicated to St James) was built at the turn of the 13th century. In pre-Christian period, the site seated a sacred grove of the Slavs (according to a legend). A wooden church was erected here probably in the 12th century. Records from 1285 mention Sdezlausa (Zdzisław), the parish priest of “de Jemielnicha” as a witness to Bishop Tomasz’s document. So, this was the first parish church in Jemielnica (until 1810). Until 1289 the church served as both a parish and monastery church because the first, wooden monastery edifice was built nearby. Later, the monastery was moved about 200 m to the north-west at the request of the monks and gave rise to a new church and monastery complex. The patron’s name was transferred to the new monastery church. In 1477 the church was re-consecrated and renamed as All Saints Church. In 1655, thanks to the sponsorship of Abbot Bernard Bogaczyński and Mayor Mikołaj Jankowski, the church was restored after damage inflicted in the Thirty Years War. The fire of 1733 damaged the church again and left it roofless. During the renovations, a sacristy and porch were added. Three years later, the church yard was expanded and walled in. In 1738 an altar was brought from St Joseph’s Chapel in the monastery church and installed as the main altar. Its central image was replaced with that of All Saints. The parishioners equipped the church with any necessary liturgical items and pews.

In 1812 the parish was moved to a larger monastery church, and the role of the one in question was reduced to a funeral church. In 1841 the church yard was extended again by taking away some part of the village green. Further renovations were taken up made in the church in 1826, and in 1871 it new slate roofing, replaced with sheet metal in the 1960s. The last repairs before WW2 were carried out in between 1933 and 1935. During that work, Gothic polychromy was uncovered on the chancel walls.

Description

Gothic church from the 13th/14th century, east-oriented, built of broken limestone on lime mortar, plastered smoothly. A cemetery, bell tower i chapel adjacent to the church and surrounded by a wall with gates. The two-bay nave accessible through a porch from the south, with a morgue added in the 19th century, passes into a quadrilateral chancel with the south sacristy. The purlin and rafter roof truss. The roofs covered with galvanized sheet. Over the nave, there is an ave-bell turret of 1747, with an octagonal lantern topped with a bulbous cupola. From the south, the chancel borders with the sacristy on a rectangular floor plan, with barrel vaulting. The nave and chancel are buttressed, which confirm the Gothic origin along with the cross-ribbed vault in the chancel rested on supports with masks and a pointed-arch rood opening. The vault of the nave is in the late Renaissance style (reconstruction in 1655 after the Thirty Years War), a barrel structure with lunettes on arches, decorative battens forming medallions. The wooden choir of the 17th century has survived, supported by two columns accessible through the wooden stairs.

The church features lavish fittings. The chancel walls boast valuable Gothic paintings from 1436 and a capitalized inscription. Polychromy also covers the lower section of the rood and the splayed sections of the pointed-arch window. The last conservation of the polychromy took place in 2004. The pulpit and the entire equipment of the second half of the 17th century creates a uniform Baroque whole stylistically.

The architectural main altar from 1738 exhibits a painting of All Saints, signed by Christian Lansen. The fragments of the original Gothic altar of this temple have been moved to a wooden church in Sieroty, Silesian Voivodeship.

The monument is available to visitors by appointment with the Tourist Information Point, phone: 77 556 10 86.

Compiled by Maria Burian, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Opole, 18.07.2014.

Bibliography

  • Codex Diplomaticus Silesiae, Bd. 7, 1886; Regesten zur schl. Geschichte, Th. 3: Bis zum Jahre 1300, No 1906.
  • A. WELTZEL, Das fürstliche Cisterzinserstift Himmelwitz., Breslau 1895, S.174-202.
  • G.P. KRUSCH, Chronik der Zisterzienser Stiftes der Pfarrei und der Gemeinde Himmelwitz., Essen 1985, passim.
  • J. RAJMAN, Jemielnica: wieś i klasztor cysterski na Górnym Śląsku, Katowice 1995, passim.
  • KALA W., Dzieje kościoła parafialnego w Jemielnicy., Opole 1984
  • Katalog Zabytków Sztuki w Polsce, woj. opolskie, powiat strzelecki, T. VII, z. 14, s.22.
  • Opracowanie z archiwum WUOZ w Opolu: Studium historyczno- ruralistyczne wsi Jemielnica, Pracownia Dokumentacji Zabytków ALMA, Wrocław 2011r.
  • Śląsk. Zabytki sztuki w Polsce, praca zb., Warszawa 2006, s. 369.

General information

  • Type: church
  • Chronology: 1224
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Jemielnica
  • Location: Voivodeship opolskie, district strzelecki, commune Jemielnica
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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