The Holiest Virgin Maria Church on Piaski Island

The Holiest Virgin Maria Church on Piaski Island The name of the Holiest Virgin Maria church on Piaski (on the sand) comes from Latin Sancta Maria in Arena - from the Roman church of saint Maria built in the place of the former arena on which first Christians were dying a painful death during the time of persecutions. This Gothic church built during the years 1334–1375, consecrated in 1369, and in the year 1430 equipped with a tower (the second one has never been finished) has the largest cubature on Lower Silesia. The whole temple counts 78 m of length, 25 m of width, 23,8 m of height inside and 41 m to the crest.

Little of the original interior decorations were saved from the robbery accomplished in 1632 by Swedish mercenaries and the next four fires, which took place in the years 1730, 1763, 1790 and during the World War II. Stained-glass windows were removed in 1666 (those adorning the church at present were made after the war). Only few remainders were kept from a rich painting decoration of the interior. One however can still admire here a richly adorned late-gothic stone font and exquisite consoles decorated with the figures of angels and prophets. It is also worth paying attention to the chapel of the saint Cross, designed by Antonio Caldin and built in 1666, the oldest baroque object in Wroclaw. One can also see an impressive collection of wooden altars from various periods in the church, brought from destroyed during the world war II Silesian churches. Some will be delighted with a huge movable crèche, which from year to year grows rich with new mechanical toys.

English Polski