Frombork – St Nicholas Church

History

   Church of St. Nicholas, a former parish church of Frombork, was built at the end of the 14th century and recorded for the first time in 1405. In subsequent centuries it was seriously damaged several times and then rebuilt, which, however, did not erase its original character. Fires ruined his interior, among others in 1414, 1440 and 1454. In 1461 it was partially destroyed during the siege of the city. Then the entire western wall collapsed along with the row of pillars. The reconstruction was carried out in the years 1461-1507. The church was again damaged in 1520 and in 1574. After rebuilding, it was re-consecrated by bishop Marcin Kromer in 1582. Reconstruction works were also carried out in the years 1691-1694. Once again, the upper part of the western wall, gables and roofs were reconstructed, and the entire interior was covered with vaults (previously there was a flat ceiling) and a western porch was added. In 1703, the 16th century belfry was rebuilt. Once again, the church was destroyed in 1945, during the Second World War – the roof and the entire baroque interior were then completely burned, only the perimeter walls were preserved. The construction was secured and rubble was removed only in 1960, and its reconstruction was carried out in the seventies of the twentieth century.

Architecture

   The church was built as a Gothic, non-orientated, brick structure, erected on a rectangular plan, as a three-aisle hall without an externally separated chancel. The nave’s façades were supported by buttresses, divided by pointed-arched windows and decorated with slender ogival blendes. The portals with stepped, profiled jambs had the same shape. The triangular gables of the building (north and south) were divided by five ogival blendes. Above the sacristy, situated on the eastern side, there were stepped pinnacle half-gables, decorated with blendes of the same shape. The nave was covered with a gable roof made of tiles, and the sacristy with a mono-pitched roof. The interior of the church was divided by octagonal pillars (on the eastern side they are original, the western ones come from the beginning of the 16th century). Originally, church was covered with a flat wooden ceiling, while in the sacristy there was a cross-rib vault.

Current state

   Multiple disasters and damages did not obliterate the original, Gothic character of the building, although some of its walls (e.g. the south-eastern gable) are the result of post-war reconstruction. Currently, the monument can be seen only from the outside, in the future it is planned to adopt the church for the diocesan museum.

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bibliography:
Rzempołuch A., Przewodnik po zabytkach sztuki dawnych Prus Wschodnich, Olsztyn 1992.

Webpage leksykonkultury.ceik.eu, Kościół pw. św. Mikołaja we Fromborku.
Webpage wikipedia.org, Kościół św. Mikołaja we Fromborku.