Striking drone photos reveal secrets of Warsaw’s Zygmunt’s Column
Fascinating close up drone photography has revealed breathtaking details of Warsaw’s Zygmunt's Column.
The captivating images from the city's heritage protection office showcase the tiniest intricacies of the colossal monument, bringing it to life in an unprecedented manner.
The column of Zygmunt III Waza was the first modern monument in Europe to feature a layman on a column when it was completed and unveiled on November 24, 1644.
Since then, it has become one of Warsaw's most recognisable landmarks and an integral part of the city's skyline.
The monument, reaching an impressive height of 22 meters, presents a challenge for Castle Square's visitors to fully appreciate the exquisite bronze figure's detailed craftsmanship.
To overcome this, the Warsaw Heritage Protection Office dispatched a drone to meticulously scan the structure in preparation for restoration work.
Seen from close up, the photos reveal eye-catching details and show just how massive the statue of King Zygmunt is.
The monarch's face is perfectly visible and the decoration on his mantle is particularly impressive.
The monument was erected in 1644 on the initiative of King Wladyslaw IV Vasa in honour of his father, King Zygmunt III Waza in order to honour his father and glorify the Waza dynasty.
The statue depicts the monarch decked out in full armour, holding the Order of the Golden Hind, his coronation gown, and his closed crown.
He also holds a sword in his right hand and a big Latin cross in his slightly bent left hand.
The cross represents submission to the Catholic faith, the crown and robes stand for monarchy, while the armour and sword represent knighthood, and the sword and shield stand for chivalry.
Until the unveiling in 1810 of the Napoleonic column on Paris' Place Vendôme, it was the only secular column in Europe.
The column was hit by a shell from a tank during the Warsaw Uprising on the night of September 1-2, 1944, and demolished.
Legend has it that when the king lowers his sabre, it heralds misfortune and the fall of the city, which came true in 1944.
After the war, thanks to a nationwide fundraising effort, the column was rebuilt and unveiled again in 1949.
However, it was not put back in the same place. In 1949, the column and the figure of the king standing on it were moved six metres to the north-east.
The monarch himself no longer looks towards Senatorska Street, but now looks down Krakowskie Przedmieście.