The cemetery chapel of the Holy Cross, Lwówek Śląski
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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The cemetery chapel of the Holy Cross

Lwówek Śląski

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An example of a small, Gothic cemetery chapel made of stone.

History

The chapel was erected in 1496 in the erstwhile parish cemetery, most likely replacing an older chapel of St Stephen and St Lawrence, first mentioned in written sources in 1458. It was renovated and adapted to serve as a patrician tomb chapel in 1682. Partially destroyed during the great fire which engulfed the town in 1752, it was subsequently restored and extended through the addition of a sacristy before 1755. During the fourth quarter of the 20th century, the chapel was restored, although today it remains disused.

Description

Located in the western part of the town centre, south-west of the church of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven, the chapel is designed in the Gothic style. It is a small, aisleless structure built on a rectangular floor plan. The compact structure is made of ashlar stone and topped with a hip roof surmounted by a slender steeple and clad with ceramic roof tiles. Other than the steeple, the chapel does not feature a tower or turret of any kind. A rectangular sacristy annex, narrower than the main body of the chapel, adjoins it to the east and is covered with a shed roof. The façades of the chapel feature a rough plaster finish. The western façade features a plain portal topped with a semicircular arch, while a pointed-arch portal adorned with intersecting bar tracery pierces the northern wall of the building. The pointed-arch windows in splayed reveals feature partially surviving tracery patterns. The interior is a single, undivided space with a lierne vault, its ribs resting on supports in the form of grotesque masks (1496). The western part of the chapel houses a wooden organ gallery. The southern wall of the nave is adorned with wall paintings depicting Christ falling on his way to Calvary as well as the meeting of Christ and St Veronica (executed back in the 15th/16th century and only revealed during modern times). The interior fixtures and fittings are rather modest, comprising, among others, a Classicist main altarpiece from the 3rd quarter of the 18th century, a few 18th-century oil paintings, an 18th-century epitaph plaque and a tomb slab from ca. 1500.

The building can only be viewed from the outside. For more information, please contact the parish office.

compiled by Piotr Roczek, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Wrocław, 01-09-2015.

Bibliography

  • Słownik Geografii Turystycznej Sudetów. Vol. 2 Pogórze Izerskie, Vol. I, M. Staff (ed.), Wrocław 2003, p. 460, 463
  • Zabytki sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, Warsaw 2006, p. 533.

General information

  • Type: chapel
  • Chronology: schyłek XV w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Kościelna , Lwówek Śląski
  • Location: Voivodeship dolnośląskie, district lwówecki, commune Lwówek Śląski - miasto
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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