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ART: the Gothic Route – the Wall Painting in the Church of the Holy Trinity in Rákoš Issue number
805
Date of issue
26.10.2023
Face value
2.60 €
Sell price
2.60 €

Near Jelšava, in the old mining village of Rákoš, there is a church within which are hidden precious Gothic paintings, not only inside the church but also, to some extent, on the outer walls. The Roman Catholic Church of the Holy Trinity is an early Gothic single-nave building from the middle of the 13th century. Wall paintings from the last third of the 14th century to the second half of the 15th century cover the walls and vault of the presbytery and almost the entire north wall of the nave. They are high-quality frescos ordered for the church by the local wealthy landowners, the Bubek family. During their travels through northern Italy, in the service of King Louis the Great, they had the opportunity to see the best works of the Italian masters. They brought them to the Kingdom of Hungary to decorate churches in Plešivec, Štítnik and Rákoš. The northern wall of the nave is almost entirely covered with murals in three horizontal bands. The upper band depicts scenes from the legend of St. Ladislaus – warriors from the royal retinue with spears on horseback led by St. Ladislaus in a dynamic scene from the battle with the Cumans. The vault in the sanctuary portrays the enthroned Christ with angels, sending his blessings, the four Church Fathers and symbols of the Evangelists. The walls of the sanctuary bear depictions of prophets, apostles and the three Hungarian royal saints: Ladislaus, Stephen and Imrich. The frescos on the walls of the triumphal arch are dominated by a well-preserved seated figure of the God, sending his blessings, with three faces. This unusual depiction of the Holy Trinity, which was later banned by the Council of Trent for its striking resemblance to the pagan Triglav, appears in our territory, for example, in Ochtiná and Žehra in the Spiš region. On the outer southern wall of the church, fragments of a painting of the Madonna and Child, part of the original monumental figure of St. Christopher, the patron saint of wanderers, and a kneeling figure of St. Rufus, the patron saint of stonemasons and miners, have been preserved.

Vladimír Ondrejovič

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