15. The Evangelical Parish Church of Augustan Confession "St. Mary"

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Address

Piața Albert Huet FN, Sibiu 550182, Romania

About

You are in front of the tower marking the highest point in the city. It is the tower of the Evangelical Church of Augustan confession "St. Mary”, and it reaches a height of about 74 m. 
Considered by architects a "Gothic jewel" of Transylvania, the construction probably began in the thirteenth century. During the fourteen century, the present church was built over the foundations of the first building. 
The church was improved in both structure and style. The walls were raised and the nave widened. The tower was gradually heightened, receiving the four turrets in the fifteenth century. Different flags were raised on the turrets to send messages to the community (black in case of mourning). 
You can hear the sound of the three huge bells (they have over 5 tons!) through the stone windows below the rooftop. The current clock was put into operation in 1881. It is regarded as the most precise clock in Sibiu, so now is a good moment to set your watch ... to the time of the city. 
At the beginning of the 20th century, the roof was decorated with glazed tiles. The current model is due to a recent, thorough restoration. The motifs of the facade restore the elegance and harmony of the mature Gothic style. 
The statue of the evangelical bishop George Daniel Teutsch was raised in front of the church. 
 
The interior will impress you with its high vaults, its columns supporting the choir, and the stained windows. The details of the facade of the pipe organ, the baroque altars and stuccos will draw your eyes. 
The conversion of the Saxon community to the evangelical religion after the Protestant Reformation in 1517 is reflected in some details. For example, the fresco painted in 1445 by the master Johannes de Rosenau was modified. Today we can see Mary with baby Jesus in her arms, but also the sun with which they covered this detail. Although the evangelical religion has removed the Cult of Saints, the church is still known as the Evangelical Church of Augustinian Confession "Saint Mary", an antagonistic expression in this context. 
On the western side, the nave houses an impressive collection of funerary stones. They are worth a visit, if access is allowed. From the inside, the enclosure is separated from the main nave, and from the outside, it seems to support the tall tower. 
 
🤔 Did you know?

🔍 The tower to the left of the main entrance houses the spiral stairs leading to the roof and to the church tower. There is an inscription under the roof: 1520 - the year when the tower was finished.

🔍 In 1803, Baron Samuel von Brukenthal was the last personality buried in the church, after such burials were banned in 1796.

🔍 One of the oldest funerary stones in the nave dates from 1510, and it belongs to the son of Vlad Țepeș, Mihnea vodă cel Rău, assassinated in the Huet Square. 
• The church and the tower are closed for restoration until 2021. 

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