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Cathedral of Gurk

Date of Submission: 01/08/1994
Criteria: (i)(iii)(iv)
Category: Cultural
Submitted by:
State, Province or Region:
Ref.: 32

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The centre of the bishopric of the same name founded in the 11th century, the former cathedral church of Gurk is one of the most significant examples of Romanesque churches in Austria. It dates back to the 12th century and continued growing up to the 17th century. However, despite various late-medieval and Baroque modifications and additions it has preserved its Romanesque character. This applies in particular to the "hundred-pillar" crypt, the burial place of the founder, StHemma of Gurk. Among the rich stock of medieval frescos and Baroque altars, the most notable are the frescos of the bishop's gallery in the west wing of the church which are master works of the serration style in European fresco paintings of the 13th century. The former convent buildings are to the north of the church; the medieval parts were refashioned in the 17th century and are arranged around the early Baroque arcaded court. The entire convent complex is surrounded by a wall built in the late 15th century following Turkish incursions on the region.