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“St Ioan Botezatorul” Church from Piatra Neamt

1 September 2010 No Comment

st-ioan-church-curtea-domneasca-piatra-neamtBetween 1468 and 1475 in Piatra Neamt was built the architectural complex “Curtea Domneasca” by ruler Stefan cel Mare. This was the administrative center of Neamt County. Shortly after, was also built the church of St Ioan Botezatorul and the Bell-tower (also known as The Tower of Stefan cel Mare).

St Ioan Botezatorul Church from Piatra Neamt was built between July 15 1497 and November 11 1498 and represents the most valuable construction from the architectural complex “Curtea Domneasca” built by Stefan cel Mare. The church has a length of 25.90 m, width of 8.10 m and height of 11.30 m and it stands out because of its shape and fine style. The architecture of the building is classic for the Moldavian traditional style.

The interior of the church is divided into three classic parts for an orthodox church: the ante-temple, the nave and the altar. The entrance into St Ioan Botezatorul Church is made through a stone gate with gothic influences. To enlarge the interior space of the church the builders created a big opening into the wall that finishes with an impressive transversal arch. A classic ornament for that period was three stone rods twisted around each other.

The interior of the altar is in the shape of a quarter of a sphere and has only one window on the central ax of the church. Between 1871 and 1973 numerous restoration operations were performed both on the inside as well on the outside of St Ioan Botezatorul Church from “Curtea Domneasca” Architectural Complex. An important restoration operation was the replacement of the old iconostasis with a new one. The sculpture of the new iconostas was made by the monk Gherasim and the digger Tanase and was painted in the same way as the church from Agapia Monastery by painters Panaite Mavrodic and C. V. Basarab.

Because of many restorations of the interior painting we don’t know if the church was painted or not during the life of its builder. In the XIX century the pulpit and the coir balcony were built and in 1937 the roof was also restored by the workshop of the Art and Trades School from Piatra Neamt. The exterior of St Ioan Botezatorul Church from “Curtea Domneasca” Architectural Complex represents a unique element from the time of ruler Stefan cel Mare.

Among the heritage objects from St Ioan Botezatorul Church from Piatra Neamt there are: Bohemian crystal chandeliers donated by Nicu Albu in 1837, icons painted by Constantin Stahie and Petre Savinescu, The Holly Evangel from Neamt Monastery from 1821, the Evangel from Sibiu from 1854, silver crosses, old books and more.

St Ioan Botezatorul Church from “Curtea Domneasca” Architectural Complex from Piatra Neamt can be visited as a historic monument or you can attend the religious service. The church, together with Stefan cel Mare Tower and the museum from “Curtea Domneasca” Complex and represent the main touristic attraction of Piatra Neamt.

See the accommodation possibilities from Neamt County

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