As Poland weathers its first proper winter in years with the mercury dropping to over -20 degrees Celsius and snowfall covering much of the country, we turn our attention towards the climate in general.
Measuring 13-metres high, costing nearly 14 million PLN to restore and with some piece weighing as much as 250kg, the 15th century altarpiece, the full name of which is the Altar of the Dormition of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is widely regarded as one of the most outstanding works of Gothic art in Europe.
In this week’s Webber’s World, our intrepid explorer finds himself 30km east of Elbląg in a rambling old manor house set amongst silent forest paths, misty morning fields, grazing wild deer, and a snuffling rabbit named David. Welcome to Dwór Dawidy.
Previously assumed that gothic jewellery was of inferior quality to that of the Romans’, the haul of over 3,500 items of jewel-craft buried along with the dead near Elbląg, included silverware which when analysed revealed it to be 92-97 percent pure.
The ‘Pietas Domini’ gothic altar painting from 1435, known as the Throne of Grace, hung in Gdańsk’s St. Mary's Basilica until May 1942, when German art conservators dismantled it and took it deep into Nazi Germany.
After being the bosses for decades in January 1920, the Germans relinquished control to the Poles.
Dating back to the 12th century, the oldest school in Poland doesn’t disappoint those expecting the country’s version of Harry Potter’s Hogwarts. Ghosts are alleged to stalk the corridors, pupils share the grounds with over 600 corpses, and its alumni include leaders, presidents and saints. TFN’s Stuart Dowell went to find out more.
Who can fail to be enraptured rolling into Reszel. As far as arrivals go, it’s the kind of entrance that sends spirits soaring: puttering across an arcing Gothic bridge that spans the River Sajna, cars pootle past neat lines of townhouses before coming to a standstill in front of a hulking fortress. Even in the warm glow of a summer sunset, there’s something about it that feels ominous and heavy.