Poland Lwów
Ukraine Lviv
German Lemberg
priory and church

The time line of the city.

Siource: www.kresy lwow

For the history of the Dominicans in Poland before 1990, click here.

A brief description.

The city is called Lwow in Polish, Leopol in latinized Polish, Löwenburg
or Lemberg in German, Lwihohrod in Ruthenian.
It was founded in 1256 by the Ruthenian King Daniel for his son Leo, Prince of Halicz, and took its name from that prince. Destroyed by the Tatars in 1261, it was rebuilt in 1270 on the same spot by Prince Leo

In 1340 Casimir the Great, King of Poland, took possession of it, built two new castles, attracted German colonists to it, and gave it a charter modelled on that of Magdeburg.
In 1372 Louis of Hungary entrusted the administration of the city to Wladislaw, Prince of Oppeln; in 1387 it was given as dowry to the Princess Hedwig, by whose marriage with Jagellon it became a possession of the Polish Crown.

Lemberg was thenceforward the recognized capital of the Russian territories dependent on Poland (i. e. Red Russia), which preserved their autonomy undiminished until 1433.

The city was one of the great entrepôts of European commerce with the East, which, after the taking of Constantinople by the Turks, followed for the most part the overland route.

Source: Internet

The Dominican church

The Dominican church and priory (Ukrainian: Домініканський костел і монастир, Polish: Kościół i klasztor Dominikanów we Lwowie) in Lviv, (Lemberg) Ukraine is located in the city's Old Town, east of the market square. It was originally built as the Roman Catholic church of Corpus Christi, and today serves as the Greek Catholic church of the Holy Eucharist.

The Dominican Order first arrived in Lviv during the 13th century and the first wooden church is said to have been built in 1234 within the Low Castle, founded by the wife of Leo I of Halych. That church burned down during a war in 1340. A new Gothic church, resembling the parish church in Kazimierz Dolny, was built on the present site in 1378 and later rebuilt after a fire in 1407 along with the priory's  buildings.

During the 16th century the complex was ravaged by several fires, nevertheless it continued to gradually rise in prosperity. In the 18th century the churches ceiling started cracking and it was decided in 1745 that the church has to be taken apart and replaced with a new one.

In 1749 Józef Potocki laid the corner-stone for the present day Baroque church, commonly attributed to Jan de Witte (1716-`785). The church was consecrated in 1764 by the Latin archbishop of Lviv Wacław Hieronim Sierakowski. The Dominicans managed to safely survive through the reign of the Austrian emperor Joseph II, who closed many other monasteries. In 1865 a neo-baroque bell tower was added to the complex. In the years 1885-1914 a controversial renovation of the facade and interior was carried out.

After World War II the complex was occupied by Soviets, used as warehouse and in the 1970s changed into a museum of religion and atheism. With the collapse of the Soviet Union the church was given to the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and now serves as a parish church. The priory however has not been returned yet and still serves as a museum, renamed as the museum of religion.

The church resembles the church of St. Charles Borromeus in Vienna. It's built on the plan of the Greek Cross inscribed in an ellipsoid and topped with a monumental dome.

 Before 1946 the church contained a wonder working icon of the Blessed Virgin Mary, crowned by Pope Benedict XIV in 1751, which can today be found in the Dominican church of Saint Nicholas in Gdańsk and an alabaster figure brought by Saint Hyacinth from Mongol sacked Kyiv to Halych and later to Lviv, today can be found in the church of Saint Giles in Kraków.

Source: Wikipedia: Churches in Ukraine.
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The Dominicans were in Lwów with a great priory
1270. They have an own printing-office,
which by the Russian attack was seized in 1939.

The church was built by Jan de Witte (1716-1785)
 after the design of Saint Peter in Rome from 1749
till 1764. The church is dedicated to Corpus Christi
and today in use as
the Ukrainian Greek Catholic
Church of the Holy Eucharist.

Poland 1931, postal card.



At the right the Dominican church in Lwów.

Poland occupation 1943, Mi 115, Sc N102.





The burning city Lwów, Lemberg, during the World
War II,  1940-1945. The portrait of the Polish General Wladislaw Langner.
Between the N and A of Wojna, at the top, the dome
of the Dominican church.

Poland 1989, Mi 3219, Sc 2925.


The market square of Lviv, Polish Lwow German Lemberg.
In the background the Dominican church with the dome.

Russia 1972, Mi 4027, Sc 3992.



At the right the Dome of the Dominicans in Lviv, Lwów,

Ukraine 1995, Mi 146, Sc 214.




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