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Biertan



 

This heavily fortified church sits on a hilltop in the center of Biertan village. The church was mentioned for the first time in 1402; most likely a Gothic basilica, it was completely demolished. The only remains of the original church are some stone vault ribs and a few bosses. Today’s church is a hall-shaped church with a chief nave and two side-aisles.

The four-bay church has a 5/8 apse and was built between 1500 and 1525, during the time of Priest “Baccalaureus Johannis”. The church has net-shaped brick-ribbed vaults over its entire ceiling. Late-Gothic and Renaissance stone masonry is also preserved, including doorways, brackets, the pulpit, and other items.

Biertan church towers
Biertan church towers
 

The wooden furniture, the doors, and the folding triptych date back to the beginning of the 16th century. The EUROPA NOSTRA restoration from 1978 to 1991 revealed parts of the former paintings and inscriptions. On the southern part of the upper plateau, the "Catholic Tower" contains preserved fresco paintings from the mid-15th century.

Biertan church tower detail
Biertan church tower detail
 

The two shielding walls, which partially lie on arches, are strengthened by many towers and a bastion. To reach the upper plateau of the fortress, one must pass four gate-towers. The outer wall, situated mostly at the base of the hill, is strengthened to the west and south by two fortified zwingers with gate towers. Since 1993 the whole church complex is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Biertan fortified church towers
Biertan fortified church tower

Biertan church detail
Biertan church detail
 

 
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