St. Spas Church (Prizren)

Status

Type of Protection: Permanent protection Date of Protection: 1598/48

Type of Protection: Under termporarly protection Date of Protection: 2010

Type of Protection: Under termporarly protection Date of Protection: 2011

Type of Protection: Under termporarly protection Date of Protection: 2012 - 2014

History

The St. Spas Church is located in the Historical Centre of the city, namely in the south-eastern side of Nen-Kalaja. A written source (Dusan’s Chrysobula, 1348), among others mentions this church to be a property of Mladen Vladojevic and his mother, and that it was built between 1333-1335, while in 1348, it was donated to the Archangel Monastery. In the second part of the 18th Century, the Vlach (Aromanian) community in Prizren obtained the right to use the church for their needs. After some time, namely in 1836, the Vlachs begun building a new church, which was named the St. Trinity Church, thereby adding upon the existing church higher walls and the bell tower. Due to unknown circumstances, this construction was never finished. The church was used by the Vlachs until 1912. After 1912, and until 1999, the Church was only used in religious festivities. The facility itself is a medieval church, with elements of late Byzantine. It is built in modest dimensions, in an inscription cross design. The layout includes one nave, pronaos and a crossed lintel, and a western-side narthex. The Church is covered by an octagonal cupola, built over the tumbler. The entrance is in the western side, where from the narthex, one can pass to the naos, and further to the altar. The absida is internally arched, while from the outside, it appears to have three slopes. Although it appears to be a church of modest dimensions in a first sight, in terms of architectonic volumes, both from the interior and exterior sides, the monument is known for its highly artistic and constructive values. The construction technique used in this church is relievo chiselling (clausonage – combination of brick and stone) throughout its envelope. Terracota elements in the cupola, architraves, around the windows, and semi-circular arches on windows pursue the same decorative trend of the facade. Frescoes were drawn in two stages. Frescoes in the sanctuary were executed first, during the fourth decade of the 14th century. Other frescoes were painted in 1348. Murals inside the church, despite being damaged during the fires and plastering, remain rich. For a difference from other churches in Prizren, this church is noted for more developed proportions, and a higher quality in architectonic treatment. Based on the shapes and techniques in construction, the monument is assumed to pertain to the first half of the 14th century. During the years 1953-1963, the church was taken under conservation. During the period 2010 – 2011, the UNESCO undertook restoration works in the church, thereby restoring structures of walls, roofing and interior. Based on its dominating position, architectonic and constructive content, this church is one of the most characteristic religious monuments of Prizren.

References

Unique number: 002855

Name: St. Spas Church

Class: Monument

Institution: RCCH - Prizren

Location

Country: Kosovo

Municipality: Prizren

City/Village: Prizren

Locality: Nen-Kalaja

Postal Code: 20000

Name of Street: "Nen-Kalaja"

Functional type and dating

Type:Arkitektuale - ENG

Period: Late Medieval

Century: 14th

Supported by:

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© 2014 / The content expressed herein are responsibility of the Government of Kosovo ose the Ministry for Culture, Youth and Sports and do not necessarily reflect the views of the donors or CHwB.