Ząbkowice Śląskie – St Anna’s Church


   The temple was probably built soon after the location of the town around the mid-thirteenth century in the gothic style. It was mentioned for the first time in sources in 1292, in a document issued by Krystian, parish priest of Sadlno and Ząbkowice. Probably in the mid-fourteenth century, the church was burned during a fire. The rebuilding was funded by the Czech king Charles IV. The date of its completion is 1413 or 1415.
In 1428, the town suffered severely during the invasion of the Hussite army, during which the temple was also damaged. Its reconstruction ended only in 1453. During these works, a new nave, side aisles and two side chapels were added to the old chancel. In 1507 a chapel of the Marian brotherhood was erected over the sacristy. Later, this room was called a library, but it is not known why, because the chapel probably never performed such a function. In the same year, a brick porch was built, connecting the church with the Leaning Tower, which then served as a belfry.
Around the middle of the 16th century, the temple was in a very bad condition, and the church’s vaults were in danger of collapsing. In 1547, new vaults of aisles were made, work on the cover of the nave and the presbytery was completed only in 1563.
In 1538, the order of the sons of Charles I of Podebrady, who, after the death of their father, converted to Protestantism, all the temples in the town passed into the hands of Evangelicals. Ten years later, Ząbkowice was covered by recatholicization, and the church was returned to Catholics again. A dozen or so years later, the temple once again passed into the hands of Protestants. In 1632, the Swedes occupied the town, which gave the townspeople the opportunity to exile the Catholic parish priest who miraculously escaped with life. He went to Vienna, where he presented his case to the emperor. When the town occupied the imperial army, the Protestant pastor fled the town, and the emperor ordered that the parish priest and all his looted things be returned to the Catholic parish priest. The delegation of the town residents went to the parish priest, who then lived in Kłodzko and asked him to return to Ząbkowice.
In 1772, the temple was extended with a late-baroque chapel of St. Anne. In the years 1893-1896 it was restored in the neo-gothic style, when the face elevations were changed. At that time, annexes were added from the south and west. After the Second World War, in 1976-1977, the interior was renovated, which consisted in removing damp and molded plasters and painting the interior.


   It is a orientated church, three-nave, four-bay, hall. On the northern and southern bays of the nave, chapels are built on a rectangular plan, that forms a transept. The temple is covered by four types of vaults: rib over aisles, sacristy and baptismal chapel; net vault over on the chancel and the central nave, stellar eight-arm vault over the western bay of the nave and the four-arm over the northern porch and in the hall of the Marian Brotherhood.

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Kozaczewska H., Średniowieczne kościoły halowe na Śląsku, “Kwartalnik Architektury i Urbanistyki”, 1-4, Warszawa 2013.

Pilch J., Leksykon zabytków architektury Dolnego Śląska, Warszawa 2005.
Website zabkowiceslaskie.pl, Kościół parafialny pw. św. Anny.