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St Nicholas


Wismar, Germany
History and museums
,
church, landmark, sightseeing



The Church St. Nicholas of Wismar was built from 1381 until 1487 as a church for sailors and fishermen . St.Nicholas is one of the finest testaments to mediaeval brick architecture in northern Germany.

Based upon the design of Marienkirche (Saint Mary's) in Lübeck it is the second highest brick basilika in the world after St.Mary´s of Lübeck. St. Nicholas along with St. Mary´s and St. George, is one of the three great churches that dominate the skyline of the city of Wismar and since 2002 it is on the list of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the old Hanseatic City.

History

  • 1226 Foundation of the city of Wismar.
  • 1255 First documentary reference to St. Nicholas.
  • 1270 A dispatch mentions new construction at St. Nicholas.
  • 1370 Start of alterations to the basilica with a choir ambulatory, based on the design of the St. Mary´s church Lübeck.
  • 1403 Chancel consecreted.
  • 1434 Construction of the flanking aisles, annexes and naves.
  • 1459 The church is consecreted.
  • 1508 Construction of the spire.
  • 1517 Start of the Reformation.
  • 1523 Heinrich Never brings the Reformation to Wismar.
  • 1632 Wismar captured and held bei Sweden until 1803.
  • 1703 Spire collapses in a severe Storm, severely damaging the roof, vaulting, decor and furnishing of the nave.
  • 1867 Revaulting of the nave and until -
  • 1890 complete renovation in the contemporary neo-gothic style.
  • 1945 St. Nicholas remains the only large church in Wismar undamaged by war.
  • 1975 The Mende organ from Freiberg in Saxony arrives in St. Nicholas.
  • 1989 St. Nicholas becomes a platform for political protest in Wismar.
  • 2010 A new organ in the choir is consecreted.

Interior decoration

  • The high altar is a product of the late Baroque period. (1774)
  • The choir organ
  • Triumphal cross ( 15th Century )
  • Pulpit (1708). A Baroque work by Johannes von Rehn.
  • Mende Organ. The organ has a Renaissance era casing with Baroque enhancements, and was constructed by Johann Gottlob Mende ( 1787- 1850 ).
  • A bronze baptismal font (1335) originally from the St. Mary´s. It portrays scenes from jesus life as well the parable of the wise and foolish virgins.
  • The high altar and the triumphal cross from St. George ( both c. 1430 ) in the southside chapel.
  • Bronze burial slab (1504) of Duchess Sophie von Mecklenburg.
  • The Mariner`s Altar is the only one of 38 former ´native´ altars that remains in St. Nicholas.


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