Parish Church of St Barbara, Magnuszewice
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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Parish Church of St Barbara

Magnuszewice

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The church is a valuable example of wooden ecclesiastical architecture, typical of Greater Poland. The church is one of the few churches which feature a nave and two aisles and a false barrel vault. It also features a log structure and original fittings from the late 18th-early 19th century. There is a wooden bell tower next to the church. The complex represents architectural and spatial features typical of the rural landscape of Greater Poland.

History

The parish in Magnuszewice was established as a result of separation from the parish in Twardów in 1445. The first wooden church, dedicated to St Barbara the Martyr, was erected in the 1st half of the 15th century. Its construction was financed by an heir to the village, Marcin Magnuszewski. The church was dedicated by Archbishop Wincenty Kot in 1445. Inspection documents dating from 1603-1607 describe the building as a humble “little church” without a name or dedication to a patron saint, functioning as a filial church of the Twardów Parish. Shortly after, a new parish church, dedicated to St Barbara and St Stanislaus the Bishop, was erected. According to a description from the years 1610-1611, it was a building having a timber frame structure, with a separate chancel part, a painted ceiling, and brick flooring. There was a bell tower fitted with two bells beside the church. The church was destroyed in 1679. Another wooden church, built by the local parish-priest, Świętosław Zdzieniecki, burnt down in 1751 or in 1752. Soon after the fire, the contemporary owner of the village, Piotr Radoński, financed the construction of the present Church of St Barbara. A wooden bell tower was built beside the church in c. 1816.

The building was renovated a number of times. In 1811, the owner of the village, Anna Moskorzewski née Rembowski, financed renovations of the roof and the front façade. In the 1880s, the weakened roof truss and the sloping walls were reinforced. Iron tension ties were installed inside, the weatherboards were replaces, the north side entrance was walled up, and a porch was built onto the south wall of the church. In the years 1914-1920, the roof covering was conserved, the church interior was renovated, the bell tower, previously located on the central axis of the church, was moved slightly to the north, and a new brick wall was constructed. The most recent renovation works were carried out in 1987 and 1990.

Description

Magnuszewice is a village upon the Lutynia River, 2 km to the west of Kotlin, by a road connecting Pleszew and Golina. The Parish Church of St Barbara is situated in the north-eastern part of the village, on a flat, slightly elevated piece of land. The church yard is enclosed with a stone and wooden fence. There is a wooden bell tower next to the church.

The church is oriented towards the east. It has a rectangular floor plan. The chancel, narrower than the nave, terminates in a semi-hexagon. A sacristy having a trapezium-shaped floor plans adjoins the chancel on the north side. The nave is adjoined by a small square porch on the south side. The main body of the church is covered with a gable roof; the chancel has a multi-pitched roof. All roof planes are covered with wood shingles. A slender steeple rises above the nave. It is topped with a conical cupola surmounted by a cross.

The church has a wooden log structure. The north wall, the upper part of the west gable, and the steeple are covered with weatherboards. The window openings are framed by decorative surrounds. The main entrance features a decorative wooden portal with two engaged columns with capitals modelled on the Corinthian order.

The church has one main nave and two aisles, covered with a false barrel vault on arches, supported by two rows of posts connected by means of arches. The chancel and the nave are separated by a rood beam with a crucifix. The western bay of the nave contains a music gallery, constructed in the 19th century. The vaults are covered with subtle painted decoration.

The valuable original fittings of the church have been preserved. They include Baroque altars: the main one, dating from the mid-18th century, and two side altars from the 2nd half of the 18th century; a Late-Baroque pulpit with sculptures of angels from the 2nd half of the 18th century; and a Rococo baptismal font with a shell-shaped goblet from the mid-18th century.

The bell tower was built in 1816. Originally, it was situated on the central axis of the church, on the west side. It was moved slightly to the north during renovations carried out in 1921.

The bell tower has a wooden post-and-beam structure resting on a brick wall base. It has a rectangular floor plan. The entrance is located on the east side. The building is as tall as the nave, with walls slightly tapering towards the top. It has a tall hip roof covered with wood shingles. The walls are covered with vertically-positioned, overlapping weatherboards.

The church is open to visitors. More information about the parish and the Holy Mass schedule can be found on the website of the Gniezno Archdiocese: www.archidiecezja.pl.

compiled by Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Poznan, 13-10-2015.

Bibliography

  • Drewniane kościoły w Wielkopolsce, koncepcja, teksty i wybór fotografii P. Maluśkiewicz, Poznań 2004, s. 151.
  • Katalog zabytków sztuki w Polsce, t. V, z. 5: powiat jarociński, Warszawa 1959, s. 9-10.

General information

  • Type: church
  • Chronology: 1751 - 1752
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Magnuszewice 18
  • Location: Voivodeship wielkopolskie, district jarociński, commune Kotlin
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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