Tomasz Zieliński Palace Complex, Kielce
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Tomasz Zieliński Palace Complex



An example of a completely preserved romantic manor house from the mid-19th century, combining, into one complex, Gothic Revival, Renaissance Revival and antique-like motifs, expressing the creativity of the extraordinary personality of owner and patron of art Tomasz Zieliński. The complex is of great architectural and landscape value.


The property is situated on the slope of the Castle Hill, on the site of the former palace complex of the bishops of Kraków, in the part that belonged to the stable complex in the second half of the 18th century. The main building of the complex contains the core structure of the horse riding school building erected in 1752 using the peripheral wall; behind the wall there was a palace vegetable garden that was located slightly lower. In 1789, ownership of the bishops’ property was taken over by the State Treasury. Before 1823, the site formerly occupied by the horse riding school was used for the construction of a masonry manor house intended for administrative and residential purposes. In 1847, the property was leased to Tomasz Zieliński, Head of the Kielce District, who collected works of arts and conducted a number of construction works on the property according to his own design in twelve years. The altered and renovated interiors housed an exhibition of a collection of works of art. In the early 1850s, the manor house was extended by adding a masonry complex in the Gothic Revival style to the east, with two fortified towers and orangery. Gardener Lebrecht Schunke arranged a small garden, with terraces on different levels, in the back of the manor house. In 1854, a stone memorial column devoted to the then Polish artists was erected in the garden. In the south-western corner of the manor house, a separate masonry outbuilding was built, in which Zieliński lived until his death in 1858. On his initiative, the complex was also extended by building masonry stable and carriage house pavilions combined into one architectural whole with a screen entrance gate. The garden enlarged at the expense of the adjacent land was surrounded by a stone wall. Its southern section was decorated with a fortified tower called “Plotkarka” (“Gossiper”). Zieliński provided hospitality and accommodation to many artists in his palace. After his death, the complex was inherited by his wife who was granted a perpetual lease on the property. In 1868, her heirs sold it to physician Stefan Łuszczkiewicz. Until 1907, the property was owned by the Antecki family, then by Izydor Ziembiński, owner of glassworks and his family. The neglected complex underwent temporary repairs and renovations in 1935 under the supervision of the then monument inspector, Andrzej Oleś (a larch window frame bearing the date 1587 was found at that time). In the 1870s, the Monument Conservation Workshops Enterprise Branch in Kielce (Polish: Przedsiębiorstwo Konserwacji Zabytków O/Kielce) carried out full-scale conservation works.


The complex of buildings set slightly further back from Zamkowa Street is situated on the gentle slope of the Castle Hill. The outer front of the whole complex is made up of a masonry one-storey building from the first quarter of the 19th century, in the manor style, and covered with a mansard roof. It was built on a floor plan of a narrow rectangle. The two-bay ground floor consists of rooms arranged in an enfilade, decorated with wall paintings and stucco. The basements under the manor house and several ground floor rooms have retained the original vaults. The décor of rear taller façade of the manor house, buttressed at the bottom, is separate from that of the front façade, and its picturesque appearance is adjusted to the buildings that frame the garden interior on both sides. It is dominated by a complex of romantic structures added to the rear corner of the manor house. The complex was set on a terrace and divided into three parts: lower western fortified tower, orangery and tall eastern fortified tower embedded in the outermost part of the orangery. The orangery building is characterised by an openwork façade typical of such structures, pierced by large arcaded windows. The Gothic Revival fortified towers, of which the eastern one is a local dominant, are topped with pseudo-machicolations and battlements. On the western edge of the garden, there is a large outbuilding with its façade pierced by pointed-arch windows facing the garden. Its narrow southern façade decorated with a Renaissance Revival frieze and statues of muses exhibits a separate, distinct character. The former carriage house is masked by a curtain façade partitioned by lesenes and niches for busts and statues. A common cornice combines it with a large screen entrance gate to the property added to the manor house. In the garden there is a well and a monument in the form of a stone pillar bearing the inscription: “To the memory / glory and honour / of those countrymen that in the first half of the /19th century / became involved in science and art / and thus brought indomitable fame / and honour to their homeland. / May 1854. The face of the pillar bears two columns including a list of names of 24 painters, 7 sculptors and medallists, 20 musicians, 9 builders and engineers. A tall stone wall separates the garden from a municipal park to the south and east. The southern section of the wall was decorated with battlements and fortified tower called “Plotkarka” (“Gossiper”) overhanging like an oriel.

Part of the interior is open to visitors as part of the activity of the Centre of Creative Communities (Polish: Dom Środowisk Twórczych).

compiled by Anna Adamczyk, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Kielce, 10-06-2014.


  • Katalog Zabytków Sztuki w Polsce, vol. 3, Województwo kieleckie, issue 4. Powiat kielecki, prepared by T. Przypkowski, Warszawa 1957, p. 41.
  • Lentowicz Z., Rezydencja Tomasza Zielińskiego w Kielcach. Przyczynek do dziejów romantyzmu, in: Rocznik Muzeum Świętokrzyskiego w Kielcach, vol. 9, 1975, pp. 331-365.
  • Jakimowicz I., Tomasz Zieliński. Kolekcjoner i mecenas, Wrocław - Warszawa - Kraków - Gdańsk 1973, p. 56 et seq.
  • Adamczyk J. L., Wzgórze Zamkowe w Kielcach, Kielce 1991, p. 84, (photo 20, fig. 44, 39)
  • Adamczyk J.L., Wróbel T., Kielce portrety zabytków, Kielce 2008, p. 35.
  • Lewicki J., Pałac Biskupów Krakowskich w Kielcach. Przemiany zespołu w latach 1795-1864, in: Rocznik Muzeum Narodowego w Kielcach, vol. 26, Kielce 2011.

General information

  • Type: palace
  • Chronology: 1847 r.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Zamkowa 5, Kielce
  • Location: Voivodeship świętokrzyskie, district Kielce, commune Kielce
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland


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