Tserkva of St Onufry, Posada Rybotycka
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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The feature is the only example of a masonry tserkva in the Gothic style and with a defensive character, preserved in the Podkarpackie Voivodeship and as such, it presents a unique value on the national scale. Its uniqueness is also attested by a harmonious body embedded in the picturesque landscape of Przemyśl Foothills.


Tserkva of St Onufry was erected in the second half of the 15th century at the latest and was probably founded by the then owners of the village, stemming from the Russian nobility. The founder could be a Przemyśl-based judge, Waśko of Rybotycze, who died before 1469. For two centuries the feature served as an Orthodox church and in 1691 it became a Uniate temple after Innocenty Winnicki’s (an Orthodox ruler of Przemyśl) accession to the Union of Brest. In the late Middle Ages and in the early modern era, apart from cult-related functions, the tserkva and the surrounding fortifications served as a defensive point in the Wiar river valley. From its beginnings the tserkva in Posada Rybotycka was a monastery temple belonging to the Basilians, who owned an adjoining wooden monastery. In the 1770s, following the abandoning of the monastery by the Basilians, the tserkva functioned as a parochial temple belonging to a Uniate Eparchy of Przemyśl. After a displacement of local residents to the USRR in 1945 the tserkva remained out of use and its fittings were devastated and looted. In 1977 the tserkva was handed over to the National Museum of the Przemyśl Region, under the auspices of which the renovation and preservation works were carried out from 1977 onwards (although they were initiated already in the 1960s . Since 2010 the temple in Posada Rybotycka has been a parish tserkva of St Onufry, belonging to the Archdiocese of Warsaw and Przemyśl of the Greek Catholic church and has remained property of the Greek Catholic Archcathedral Parish in Przemyśl.


The tserkva is located on a tip of the hill on the left bank of the Wiar river in the western part of the village. From the south the tserkva is surrounded by a stone wall stretching on the edge of the hill. The tserkva is oriented towards the east. The temple was originally a two-bay one; it consists of a tall nave on a floor plan approximating that of a square, featuring a porch and a narthex, and a lower sanctuary set on a rectangular floor plan. Currently, it consists of three segments with a tower added in the west. The tserkva body is tripartite; the central part contains a nave with two storeys, covered with a hip roof crowned with a bulbous cupola. Nave corners and sides are braced with buttresses. Upper parts of the walls, on the attic level, feature small embrasures with double splayed reveals. Entrance portal to the tserkva is located in the southern part of the nave. The western part is formed by a two-storey tower with a pyramid hipped roof with one fractable, housing a vestibule on the ground floor and a chapel on the upper floor. The building is made of quarry stone on a lime mortar, plastered and covered with a hip roof made of copper sheet. The interiors feature barrel vaults on the tower’s lower storey and in the altar part of the upper chapel, while the western part features a ceiling made of wooden boards. Between the nave and the sanctuary there is a masonry iconostasis partition wall made of natural stone, with openings for Tsar and Deacon doors. The western part of the nave features a passage to the chapel on the tower’s upper floor. The painted décor of the tserkva is formed by ornamental and figurative Bysantine frescos with tempera glazing preserved in the chancel.

Limited access to the site.

compiled by Andrzej Gliwa, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Rzeszow, 24-11-2014.


  • Beiersdorf Z., Cerkiew obronna w Posadzie Rybotyckiej, „Kwartalnik Architektury i Urbanistyki”, nr 13, 1968, s. 5-13.
  • Giemza J., O sztuce sakralnej przemyskiej eparchii. Słowem i obrazem, Łańcut 2006, s. 96.
  • Gronek A., Dzieje konserwacji malowideł w cerkwi p.w. św. Onufrego w Posadzie Rybotyckiej, „Ochrona Zabytków”, nr 4/2009, s. 5-16.
  • Kieferling K., Zespół cerkwi obronnej greckokatolickiej parafialnej p.w. Św. Onufrego, ob. obiekt muzealny, 2003. (karta ewidencyjna zabytków architektury i budownictwa).
  • Różycka - Bryzek A., Program ikonograficzny malowideł cerkwi w Posadzie Rybotyckiej, w: Symbolae Historiae Artium. Studia z historii sztuki Lechowi Kalinowskiemu dedykowane, Warszawa 1986, s. 349-365.

General information

  • Type: tserkva
  • Chronology: XV-XVI w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Posada Rybotycka
  • Location: Voivodeship podkarpackie, district przemyski, commune Fredropol
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland


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