A Jewel of Transylvania: the Evangelical Church of Dârlos

The evangelical church of Dârlos is one of the many transylvanian fortified churches, built by the saxons in the Middle Ages. Although many of these small fortresses still have the defensive walls and towers, the church of Dârlos is a special one. It has only the church itself, without  defensive walls or towers, but what makes it so special is the decorative programme that still remains. DSC06401

The church is still standing in its original form, except for a few changes that have not affected it very much visually.  It is a church hall built in the gothic style, with a simple, poligonal apse. On the western part, above the entrance, it is located the belfry, a small wooden structure. The western facade is a simple one, with few decorations, but very important for the art history of the area.

DSCF3002Along with the architecture, simple yet beautiful, the church amazes with its sculptural programme, where we can see different techiques in different parts in the edifice. The most important decoration is on the western facade, where it’s located the main portal, with very detailed vine and oak leaves decorations on the column capitalsDSCF1412

At last, probably the most important decoration of the edifice is the mural painting, dating back to the XVI century. Executed in a powerful byzantine style, the painting is visible mostly in the interior of the choir and apse, but also on the exterior walls, like the western portal and the top of the choir and apse walls. DSCF2822

The main problem here is that this monument is not so well known by the tourists, and it is in a poor state of conservation. It has visible cracks in the walls and the painting is slowly disappearing at the exterior part of the walls. It is in urgent need of restauration, and conservation, because it is plenty of work to do. What can we do now is to admire and promote this monument, so that everyone could enjoy such a wonderful piece of medieval art.

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