The Church of St. Nicholas

  • The Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas (28a Bohdana Khmelnytskoho Street) is Lviv's oldest building representing an example of Ukrainian architecture of the 13th century.

     

    The Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas (28a Bohdana Khmelnytskoho Street) is Lviv's oldest building representing an example of Ukrainian architecture of the 13th century.

    The main church and spiritual centre of Ukrainian Lviv, the Church of St. Nicholas was built to commemorate the occasion of the laying of the city’s foundations. In 1292 Prince Lev issued a deed granting the right of perpetual land ownership to the church. This church is believed to have functioned as the court church and family burial vault of the Halychyna-Volyn princes. Its thick walls are built of white masonry blocks above which rise domes with lanterns. The church was constructed in accordance with the requirements of Byzantine architecture: it is arranged in the shape of a cross with a semicircular apse. According to the Orthodox tradition, however, the architect introduced the shape of a Greek equal-armed cross, thus making it look like Orthodox churches of southern countries.  

    In the course of its long history the church suffered from many fires, floods, epidemics, and assaults of foreign invaders. The church was often burnt or robbed, but the holy relics have been preserved. Antiochan Patriarch Joachim, when visiting Lviv, blessed the church with a part of Saint Nicholas’ relics. Another sacred object that is the pride of the church is the icon of Saint Nicholas the Miracleworker, depicting the saint in a Byzantine-styled phelonion against a golden background. The icon of Saint Theodore of Tyrone has been preserved from the former Church  of Saint Theodore that stood nearby, as a reminder of Ukrainian churches destroyed by the Austrian authorities at the end of the 18th century. The frescos on the main façade were made by Ukrainian artist Petro Kholodny Sr. in the 1920s.The Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas (28a Bohdana Khmelnytskoho Street) is Lviv's oldest building representing an example of Ukrainian architecture of the 13th century.

    The main church and spiritual centre of Ukrainian Lviv, the Church of St. Nicholas was built to commemorate the occasion of the laying of the city’s foundations. In 1292 Prince Lev issued a deed granting the right of perpetual land ownership to the church. This church is believed to have functioned as the court church and family burial vault of the Halychyna-Volyn princes. Its thick walls are built of white masonry blocks above which rise domes with lanterns. The church was constructed in accordance with the requirements of Byzantine architecture: it is arranged in the shape of a cross with a semicircular apse. According to the Orthodox tradition, however, the architect introduced the shape of a Greek equal-armed cross, thus making it look like Orthodox churches of southern countries.  

    In the course of its long history the church suffered from many fires, floods, epidemics, and assaults of foreign invaders. The church was often burnt or robbed, but the holy relics have been preserved. Antiochan Patriarch Joachim, when visiting Lviv, blessed the church with a part of Saint Nicholas’ relics. Another sacred object that is the pride of the church is the icon of Saint Nicholas the Miracleworker, depicting the saint in a Byzantine-styled phelonion against a golden background. The icon of Saint Theodore of Tyrone has been preserved from the former Church  of Saint Theodore that stood nearby, as a reminder of Ukrainian churches destroyed by the Austrian authorities at the end of the 18th century. The frescos on the main façade were made by Ukrainian artist Petro Kholodny Sr. in the 1920s.

     

     

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