St. Elisabeth's Cathedral - Slovakia
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Directions to St. Elisabeth's Cathedral
The easternmost Gothic cathedral in Europe, the largest church in Slovakia, and of course, the pride of the city of Košice.
The symbolism of the city's patron is evident as soon as you visit St. Elisabeth's Cathedral. Construction work on the Cathedral started around 1380. It is the furthest east western-style gothic cathedral in Europe, as well as the biggest temple of worship in Slovakia.
It houses the fascinating Altar of St. Elisabeth, a rare gothic double spiral staircase - one of just five of its kind of Europe, the crypt of the leader of the biggest anti-Habsburg uprising in the former Kingdom of Hungary, Ferenc Rákóczi II, and also a sundial from 1477.
The frescos and sculpting are the work of master Štefan, a local artist from the 15th century which adorn its interior and exterior. Thanks to the fantastic view of the city center, climbing the 60-meters-high (197 ft) northern tower is well worth the effort.
In spite of adjustments in new styles after fires and earthquakes in the 19th century the Cathedral of Košice preserved numerous original Gothic elements and valuable artistic features. They include, for example, the wonderful northern portal with the tympanum representing the Last Judgement.
The medieval gargoyle in the south-western corner of the church is also interesting. It is supposed that it has a form of woman, in particular the wife of the famous royal constructor Stephan. This is how he allegedly punished his wife for drinking too much wine.
As visitors come out of the Cathedral and have a good look at its front facade, maybe they can decipher the riddle as to why this Cathedral is unique to the world.
The guide service is available daily and in two languages (Slovak - Hungarian) from 9 am to 5 pm. If you have a larger group, please arrange the cathedral sightseeing under the phone number.
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