Kraków – St Mark’s Church


Church of St Mark was founded in 1263 by the prince Bolesław the Chaste for the augustine monks brought from Prague, which in Poland were called “marks” from the name of the church patron or “horned” from the shape of hats worn by monks. Construction began at the end of the thirteenth century from the building of the chancel, and continued during the 14th and 15th centuries. In 1494, the church was destroyed by a fire, from which only the walls of the chancel were preserved. Further fires destroyed the temple in 1528 and 1589. After 1528, gables were probably built, and after the second fire the church was thoroughly renovated and re-consecrated. In 1617 a bell tower was added and a porch next to it was erected. In the first half of the 17th century, the interior of the church was completely modernized, the nave was also rebuilt and the chancel changed. At the beginning of the 19th century, the church with the monastery was taken over by the Austrian government and intended for the house of priests of pensioners. In the years 1972-1974 the church underwent a thorough restoration.


The church consists of a brick chancel, three-side ended and three-nave, three-span, hall corpus. To the presbytery adjoined from the south-east the tower-belfry with the Chapel of the Holy Mother located in the ground floor, and further from the south the porch and the Chapel of Our Lady of Częstochowa. Outside, the corpus and the chancel are surrounded by buttresses. The church has gable roofs, covered with tiles, the roof above the naves is taller with triangular gables, decorated with ogival blendes. On the outer wall of the chancel, from the east, there are late-gothic sculptures from around 1500. Despite numerous fires and external alterations, church retained his original gothic appearance, distorted only by the puncture of modern windows.

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Krasnowolski B., Leksykon zabytków architektury Małopolski, Warszawa 2013.
Website, Historia.