Corpus Christi Church

ul. Bożego Ciała 26, Kraków


This brick church is a classical basilica with one nave and two aisles covered by a cross-ribbed vaulting, and an elongated many-sided chancel.

Visitors are especially impressed by the west side of the church, with a crow-stepped gable adorned with pinnacles and panels featuring figures of Pensive Christ, Mary Mother of Jesus and St. John the Evangelist. The tower was lifted and covered with a late-renaissance roof from ca. mid-17th century. Here, King Charles X Gustav of Sweden had his quarters during the Swedish Deluge (1655), and from here he led the siege of Kraków. The monks were cattled and practically imprisoned in one cell and the sacristy. The church's interior was severely damaged, as was the treasury, which was completely looted by the Swedish soldiers. This is why the style of the furnishings of this magnificent Gothic church comes nearly entirely from the Baroque period.

We should not be picky, though, as this pompous décor has been excellently adapted to the most refined traces of the raw Gothic architecture. Visitors are particularly impressed by the boat-shaped pulpit (with masts and sails!), supported by sirens and dolphins. Our attention is also drawn to paintings in the back of the choir-stalls, depicting the life of the canons and St. Augustine – the patron of the order.

The interior is completed by the high altar, whose majesty is emphasised by rays of muted light coming from the chancel windows, adorned with 15th-century stained glass. Among numerous tombstones and epitaphs that fill the church, it is worth noticing a mausoleum of Stanisław Kazimierczyk, a canon who died in the 15th century, and a tomb of Bartolomeo Berrecci (in St. Anne's Chapel), who designed the Sigismund Chapel in the Wawel Cathedral. His final resting place is not accidental, as he was a citizen and councilman of Kazimierz. He died in mysterious circumstances, stabbed on the Main Market Square by an envious fellow countryman. The church is connected to a multi-wing monastic complex (15th-17th centuries) with a sheltered gallery. The whole structure is encircled with a wall erected in the 17th century.


Translation: Summa Linguae

Date: 2013-06-17 Show ticket
News author: Weronika Dulowska
News Publisher: Portal główny EN
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