Wolin – collegiate of St Nicholas

History

   The present church of St. Nicholas appears in the sources in 1288 when it was handed over to the Cistercian Order. In the first half of the 14th century it was rebuilt in gothic style. In the 15th century the church had to be rebuilt after the construction catastrophe mentioned in the sources. After the fire in 1628, the vaults were removed and the central nave was lowered. The upper part of the windows in the eastern wall and the pointed connection of the nave with the inside of the tower were also walled up. It was only during this reconstruction that wooden matronea were erected and baroque furnishings were made. Further reconstruction took place at the end of the 18th and 19th centuries. As a result of the general reconstruction in the years 1857-1898, the longitudinal and lateral walls of the aisles were demolished and erected again, the highest part of the eastern gable and the upper part of the tower rebuilt. Recent renovations due to the almost complete destruction of the temple during World War II consisted of rebuilding the church’s tower and restoring sacred functions to the whole object.

Architecture

   The church was built to the south of the town market. One can not say what exactly was the 13th century original temple. After the reconstruction from the 14th century, it was a three-nave, five-bay gothic structure in the form of a pseudobasilica with a western tower on a square plan. The eastern part did not have an externally separated presbytery, it ended with a straight wall. The compact building was covered with a high gable roof, the walls were reinforced with buttresses and were pierced with large ogival windows. The most representative form was given to the eastern elevation with a two-axial middle part corresponding to the central nave, higher than the side aisles and topped with a stepped gable with blendes and pinnacles.
   The interior of the church is divided by octagonal pillars, bearing the semicircular arcades. The eastern wall of the central nave was accented with two high windows in semicircular niches. The walls of the side aisles were segmented by wall arches in which the windows were arranged. Originally, the structure was crowned with cross-rib vaults except for the eastern bay of the central nave, where a vault based on triangular fields was probably used.

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bibliography:
Jarzewicz J., Architektura średniowieczna Pomorza Zachodniego, Poznań 2019.
Pilch J., Kowalski S., Leksykon zabytków Pomorza Zachodniego i ziemi lubuskiej, Warszawa 2012

Website parafiawolin.pl, Kolegiata pw. św. Mikołaja Biskupa.