Filial church of the Blessed Virgin Mary Queen of Poland, Narost
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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Filial church of the Blessed Virgin Mary Queen of Poland

Narost

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Erected during the transitional period between the Romanesque and Gothic era, this church represents a design that was quite typical for the region, its westwork only partially complete at the time of its construction. Notable features include finely crafted detailing as well as the Late Gothic lierne vault in the chancel and the Gothic Revival interior fittings.

History

The church was erected in the second half of the 13th century. At that time, it was a structure with a tower whose width was equal to that of the main body; the tower may have been left unfinished, perhaps rising only to the height of the western gable base. The interior along with the distinct chancel section featured a wooden beamed ceiling. The very first mentions of the church in written sources date back to the year 1311, where a reference was made to the patronage extended over the church by the Cistercian nuns from Cedynia. In 1401, a mention was made of Petrus Ponat, the local parish priest. In 1491, the parish was taken over by two Augustinian monks from Chojna. The surviving Late Gothic lierne vault inside the chancel is believed to have appeared towards the late 15th century. Somewhere around the year 1549, the church was taken over by the Protestants. In 1572, the village, previously forming part of the vast estates of the Cedynia monastery, was passed on as a fiefdom into the hands of private owners, who also extended their patronage over the local church. The von Gerlach noble family is known to have owned the village for the longest period of time - from 1857 to 1928, perhaps even longer. During the final decade of the 19th century, the church underwent a thorough restoration. During that time, the unfinished lower section of the contemplated westwork was extended through the addition of a brick tower with a tall spire. The church received new, pointed-arch windows, while the chancel vaulted ceiling was either remodelled or constructed from scratch. In addition, new fixtures and fittings designed in the Gothic Revival style now graced the interior of the church. After World War II came to an end, the church was taken over by Catholics and consecrated under its current name on 17.04.1946.

Description

The church is situated in the middle of the village, on the eastern side of the main village road which leads from the north to the south. The building rises atop a small hill, surrounded by the former cemetery circumscribed by a stone wall which doubles as a retaining wall. The church is oriented towards the east. It is an Early Gothic, single-nave structure, its transverse westwork now only discernible from the inside, its width equal to that of the nave. The church also features a distinct, rectangular chancel adjoined by a sacristy to the south. The tower, designed on a square floor plan and topped with a slender spire, rises above the western end of the nave. The nave, the chancel and the sacristy all feature separate gable roofs. A small steeple crowns the eastern gable.

The nave and the chancel were constructed using granite setts laid in regular layers, while the tower (along with the spire) and the eastern gable of the nave are made of industrially manufactured brick. The window surrounds are constructed using profiled bricks from the 2nd half of the 19th century, while the roof of the nave body and sacristy are clad with S-shaped roof tiles, while the chancel roof cladding features beaver-tail tiles instead. As mentioned before, the spire which graces the tower is made of brick, much as the rest of the structure.

The façades of the nave body and chancel feature a pronounced wall base (socle). The church features a pair of surviving stone archivolt portals from the Early Gothic period, topped with pointed arches - one in the western façade (the main portal with three-stepped reveals) and one in the southern façade, featuring a single-stepped surround. The lower section of the Gothic Revival tower is partitioned with two pointed-arch blind windows with archivolt reveals, spanning two full storeys of the structure. The resulting niches are inset with pointed-arch windows. The uppermost storey is separated by a cornice, its walls pierced by three louvred bell openings on each side, set into a wide, pointed-arch recess. Each of the four tower façades is topped with a triangular pediment with a clock face. The tower corners are accentuated with pinnacles. The pointed-arch Gothic Revival windows of the nave and the chancel feature profiled reveals; the nave windows are adorned with simple tracery consisting of a profiled brick mullion dividing each window into a pair of slender lancets, surmounted by a trefoil-shaped rosette. The eastern façade features a trio of deeply set windows positioned inside a recess the upper section of which connects with another recess gracing the gable wall, topped with a semi-circular arch and incorporating three slender, pointed-arch blind windows. Inside, the nave features a wooden beamed ceiling. A Gothic Revival organ gallery is attached to the western wall of the church. The chancel is separated from the nave by a pointed rood arch and features a lierne vault with ceramic ribs supported by corbels projecting out of the walls and forming a star-shaped outline. The church features a lavish collection of surviving fixtures and fittings, including the Gothic Revival altarpiece, the pulpit, the pews as well as a pair of wooden epitaph plaques from the Baroque period (1680 and 1740 respectively) which grace the northern wall.

Exploring the interior is only possible by arrangement with the parish priest in Brwice (Chojna commune).

compiled by Maciej Słomiński, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Szczecin, 28-09-2015.

Bibliography

  • Voss G., Die Kunstdenkmäler der Provinz Brandenburg, vol. VII, part 1., Der Kreis Königsberg Nm., Berlin 1928, pp. 218-224
  • Architectural monument record sheet, compiled by T. Wolender, 1995, typescript available at the Regional Monuments Protection Office in Szczecin

General information

  • Type: church
  • Chronology: 2. poł. XIII w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Narost
  • Location: Voivodeship zachodniopomorskie, district gryfiński, commune Chojna - obszar wiejski
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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