Markušovce – St Michael’s Church


   The church was built after 1260, and the first written mention of it appeared in 1280. In the second half of the 15th century, the building underwent a great gothic reconstruction, it was also enlarged at the turn of the 15th and 16th centuries. In 1773, it was damaged by a fire that struck the original west tower, which was raised and transformed into a baroque style during another rebuilding. Further repairs of the walls were carried out in 1818. Another fire destroyed the building in 1882, which again required renovation of the tower in 1891. At the beginning of the 20th century, another lightning strike caused a fire and destroyed the church which had to be rebuilt, this time in the neo-Gothic style. The northern aisle was also extended at that time.


   The church was erected on a hill next to a medieval castle. It was originally a single-nave structure, probably with a square, late-Romanesque chancel. In the 15th century, the original chancel was replaced by a gothic one with a polygonal closure on the eastern side and with buttresses reinforced the outer facades. In the years 1486 and 1490, a side two-bay chapel of St. Cosma and Damian on the north side, and in 1500 the southern, two-bay chapel of St. Anna were built.
   Inside, the space of the chancel in a rare way has not been separated from the nave by a arch. The chancel was topped with a rib net vault, the ribs of which entered the last eastern bay of the closure, covered with a six-section vault. The southern chapel was also vaulted, with its ribs resting on consoles decorated with reliefs depicting human faces, animals and heraldic shields. The vault’s bosses were decorated with animal reliefs.

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