Places of interestSaturday 02 December 2017

Bucharest from the Middle Age to today - The Patriarchal Ensemble, an important architectural heritage

The Patriarchal Ensemble, is a beautiful edifice of prayer and pilgrimage for believers but equally attractive for the tourists coming to Bucharest to be rich in culturally, spiritually and emotionally

The Patriarchal Ensemble - Bucharest

Located on the site of the monastery "Saints Emperors Constantine and Helen" - founded by the Voivod Constantin Serban Basarab (1654-1658)) - The Patriarchal Ensemble, composed of the the Patriarchal Cathedral, the Patriarchal Residence and the Patriarchy Palace, contributes to the Bucharest's architectural heritage enrichment.

The Patriarchal Cathedral is built after the architectural model of the Curtea de Argeş Monastery church. A true masterpiece, composed of altar and nave with a expanded narthex, supported by stone columns with remarkable carved and gilded capitals. Outside a stone belt delimits two architectural registers. In porch above the entrance door there is an icon of the Saints Emperors Constantine and Helen, painted in 1665.

The current mural painting in a Byzantine style was made by Dimitrie Belizarie, between the years 1932-1935, superimposed over two layers of older paintings. The iconostasis is decorated with a filigree sculpture covered with gold. The cathedral houses the relics of St. Dimitrie the New (the patron saint of Bucharest) placed in a silver reliquary.

The Patriarchal Residence was originally an abbey which has developed as a metropolitan residence later (in 1668) and then as a patriarchal residence (in 1925). The most valuable element of the residence is the chapel. The elegance of the proportions, the value of the well-preserved painting, the beauty of the decorative composition  and the craftsmanship that is openwork and gilded the wooden part, make it an unique piece of art and architecture.

The chapel houses the relics of St. John Chrysostom locked in a silver box  placed in a carved oak reliquary. The relics were donated to the Romanian Patriarchy by Piovanelli Silvano Cardinal of Florence.

The Patriarchy Palace is built in the early twentieth century by the architect Dimitrie Maimarolu. The facade of the building decorated with pilasters on two levels is made in neoclassical style with an imposing ground floor and a peristyle of 6 Ionic columns, grouped by two. The dome of the building similar to the Romanian Athenaeum is provided with a skylight which forming the compositional axis of the building.

The Patriarchal Ensemble, is a beautiful edifice of prayer and pilgrimage for believers but equally attractive for the tourists coming to Bucharest to be rich in culturally, spiritually and emotionally.    

Elena Radu

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