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Bernardine monastery

Translated by Dictum Factum (Kyiv)


The Complex of former Bernardine kostel in the city of Lviv (now it is the St. Andrey's church) - one of the most favourite places in the city. And in a cafe “Bernardine enclosure” Igor Foma and I once had a tasty grilled cheese. It is nicely here.

In the beginning of ХХ century the square, on which the monastery is situated (now its address is: 3а, 3, Sobornaya square), had the name “the Bernardine”. Times have changed, but the work of architect Paolo Domіnіcі Romanus (Paul Rimljanin) continues to be pleasant to the eye of inhabitants of Lviv and the tourists.

The kostel-basilica of Italian (with a touch of German culture) Renaissance was being built from 1600 till 1630 on a place of its wooden forerunner of XV century. The matter, begun by Paolo Domіnіcі Romanus, was continued by architect A.Prihilnij and also by monk-builder, Bernard Avelides. It is clear, that Bernard was counted among the Bernardines. Possibly, because of that fact, that the building had several "parents", it represents the magnificent example of styles mixing: a severe bottom of ascetic Paolo Domіnіcі Romanus's traditions along with gorgeous ornamentation of the top of building in mannerism style. Similar elements we can find in architecture of Northern Europe of that days.

Look closely at a facade - and you’ll see statues of sacred persons of Bernardines Order, and in niches of the second circle you’ll see effigy of a Virgin Mary and of apostles Sts. Peter and St. Andrew.


Dracula's decree from Lviv archive

Don’t be afraid to disturb a pray of believers and come into a temple fearlessly, because it is a sin not to see such luxurious interior! Thankfully, 15 wooden stained-glass windows are preserved till our time, executed in the period of 1630 – 1640 by masters from (already Polish) city Yaroslaw, by Toma Gudderom and Kondrat Kutschenreiter. The walls are decorated with recently restored murals, which in 1738-1740 were painted by one the Bernardines and the pupil of Italian artist Giuseppe Carlo Pedretti, Benedikt Mazurkewicz. The preserved pews with carving of presbyter were made in the period of 1640-1644 by the master Paul from Bydgoszcz.

The complex of the former monastery contains also defensive walls with Glinianska gateway tower. (Using it you could get to the town of Gliniany). If you stay on the street Podvalnaja, the kostel’ll look like a real fortress: in XVII century even temples should remember the defense in case of an enemy attack. Thenadays the Bernardine asylum was surrounded with walls with loopholes. Something has remained by our days.

And a bell gable of kostel is also more similar to a castle tower. It was built in XVII century, and reconstructed in 1734.



In 1736 before the facade of kostel the memorable pillar decorated with a sculpture of Saint John of Dukla was opened. The pillar was created in memory of a siege of a city by troop of Bogdan Khmelnytsky in 1648. As if at that moment St. John protected monks and appeared in the sky - a miracle, a miracle! While this John was from Lemkivska Dukla and died in Lviv on September, 29th, 1484 at the age of 60 years, almost at once he was recognized to be saint. Relics of John have transferred in due time from Lviv to its native Dukla.

Monastic cells appeared in 1600. Nowadays they shelter historical archive of the Lviv region which started its work in1783. There are many gossips about these cells: some are a little slippery, some are a little bloody. There some bones are found sometimes, the phantom wanders. There is some talk about the pompous monk who signed in the shut cell the agreement with a devil and then disappeared from a monastery, having left only graphic design, that is a chart of Dracula, written by blood, arises in conversations. We saw with Igor that chart: really, it belongs to the time of Vlad Tsepesh, but it is a quite decent document, the permission to trade. Thenadays a policy was the policy.


Thanx for translation: Dictum Factum

Some pictures:

1837. A weekly "Przyjaciel Ludu". An engraving of 1869 (a weekly "Strzecha"). Two photos of beginning of ХХ century.
Bernardynski plac we Lwowie
The first photo dated 1900. The following - 1910. And two more pictures of the complex. Nicely.
Бернардинский костел во Львове когда-то
Leporellus of the end of ХІХ and the beginning of ХХ century. A fountain which is visible in the foreground of the following card, should be transferred shortly. Two general views of Bernardine square and pillar of Saint John of Dukla
Klasztor bernardynow we Lwowie kiedys
Klasztor bernardynow we Lwowie kiedys
Klasztor bernardynow we Lwowie kiedys
Klasztor bernardynow we Lwowie kiedys
Rotunda (1761). In a temple (on January, 11th, 2005). Near the complex the Galichsky market is humming with activity. A fragment of the old murals of a monastery.
Rotonda z 1781r.
Halicki rynek
Stara freska
An old drawing of a monastery. Blacky is near a complex. 1993. Interiors impress by sumptuous murals and by rich baroque carving. John Mateiko. "Khmelnytsky near the Lviv". In the sky John of Dukla
Lwow. Bernardynski klasztor
Bernardynski klasztor w 1993 r.
Wnetrze kosciola
Jan Matejko. Chmelnicki pod Lwowem

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