THE IDEOLOGICAL CONTENTS OF THE SIENIAWSKIS' MAUSOLEUM AT BRZEZANY (W. UKRAINE)
The Ideological Contents of the Sieniawskis' Mausoleum at Brzezany founded in 1530 by Mikolaj Sieniawski, Brzezany (Ukr. Berezhany) is situated about 80km South-East of Leopolis (Ukr. L'viv, Pol. Lwów). The family castle, completed in 1554, was raised on the town's eastern flanks. The church at Brzezany, next to the castle, is not a uniform construction. Its current shape resulted from successive extensions over the past two centuries. The original chapel was probably raised before 1524 from the funds provided by Mikolaj Sieniawski. In the years 1619-24 a chapel with cupola was added to the existing building's western side, while a second chapel with cupola was put up in 1729-30 on the church's opposite side, which was funded by Elzbieta Sieniawska of the Lubomiskis (arch. J. de Logau), thus giving rise to the so-called Brzezany mausoleum. Two completely different ideological programmes may be distinguished in the chapel: one in the cupola and the other in the sarcophagus adornings. The town subsequently passed into the hands first of the Czartoryskis and subsequently the Lubomirskis and Potockis. The uninhabited castle gradually fell into disrepair. In 1878, Count Stanislaw Potocki, decided to have the church thoroughly renovated, when the ultimate shape of the mausoleum was devised by professor Leonard Marconi of Leopolis (then officially still Lemberg) Polytechnic. In 1960 what remained of the Sieniawski tombs were transported to Leopolis to be subsequently placed in the castle at Olesko. At the time of writing, the church is in a state of complete devastation and its fate already decided. During the later-19th-century conservation work, the tombs intended for the uncompleted chapel were placed inside it and four sarcophogi belonging to the brothers Mikolaj, Aleksander and Prokop, were retrieved from the crypt in the opposite chapel. These sarcophagi happily survived and are preserved in the castle at Piaskowa Skala, in the department of the State Collections of Art housed in Wawel Castle.
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