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Kreuzkirche church in Dresden

Kreuzkirche Church, located on Altmarkt Square in Dresden, in eastern Germany, is the city’s main evangelical church. Kreuzkirche is the largest church in Saxony, its building has a capacity of 3,000 seats.

The first Romanesque church building stood on this site at the end of the 12th century. It was the only temple of a young merchant settlement; it bore the name of St. Nicholas, the patron saint of sailors and merchant people. After the bride of Margrave Meissen Henry III of Austria, the Austrian Princess Constance von Babenberg donated to the church a relic of the Holy Cross (a piece of the cross on which Jesus Christ was crucified), the church of St. Nicholas was renamed the Church of the Holy Cross. From this name, over time, only the word “Cross” (German: “Kreuz”) has survived, so today the church is called – Kreuzkirche, literally – “church of the Cross”.

The history of this temple is very dramatic. Throughout its history, the Kreuzkirche building has undergone five times destruction, and each time it was rebuilt in a new look.

From 1447 to 1449, the building of the Romanesque basilica was rebuilt into a three-nave Gothic church under the leadership of Hans and Mateus Kumollers. At this time, the Kreuzkirche church belonged to the parish of Frauenkirche in Dresden. This church building was destroyed by fire in 1491.

By 1499, the Kreuzkirche building was newly built, already with two towers. With the adoption of the Protestant Faith by Albertine Saxony in 1539, Kreuzkirche becomes the main church of Dresden. During the Seven Years’ War in 1760, Kreutskirche was destroyed by shelling of the Prussian army.

After much debate and the announcement of the competition, the new Kreuzkirche was built in the late Gothic style, with Renaissance-style decoration designed by Christian Friedrich Exner. The construction was completely completed after the death of Exner Christian Heinrich Eigengenig in 1800. But even this version of Kreutskirche was not destined to please the citizens for a long time. In 1897, the church again perishes in a fire. The new basilica building, rebuilt in 1900, enjoys magnificent Art Nouveau decoration. A whole group of architects, sculptors and artists create an altar, a department, organ decoration, wall and ceiling decoration. This version of the church lasted 45 years, before the terrible destruction of World War II.

Restoration work after the bombing on February 13, 1945 continued until 1955. Today, the Kreuzkirche church is visited annually by more than 200 thousand people.
Kreuzkirche Temple Architecture
The modern monumental building of the Dresden classic church Kreutskirche, decorated with pilasters and columns, consists of two floors.

The bell tower of the basilica, 94 meters high, was built on the model of the Dresden Hofkirche. At an altitude of 54 meters, the observation deck is equipped in the bell tower. The new tower clock, with a diameter of 3 meters, was made in 1930. The bells on the tower are preserved from the construction of the XVIII century. Their sound is considered the most sonorous and clear in all of Germany.

Interior decoration
In terms of plan, the first floor of Kreuzkirche has a square shape, with semicircular choirs at the end. The interior of the church today is very modest. The interior is dominated by gray walls with columns.

The altar painting “The Crucifixion of Christ”, painted by Anton Dietrich in 1900, with traces of the fire miraculously survived after the destruction of World War II. On the bronze relief of Heinrich Epler of the same year, the first evangelical service of Dresden is depicted, which took place in this church in 1539.

Music in Kreuzkirch
Kreuzkirche in Dresden is famous for its music concerts. Traditionally, in the summer, the Organ Sommer Organ Music Festival takes place in the church building. In addition, small organ concerts, “Orgel punkt drei”, are given twice a week at 3 p.m.

The choir of boys has existed at the temple since the XIV century, and is famous throughout the world. Every week on Saturdays you can listen to the singing of this choir.

Mode of operation
The Kreuzkirche church is an active evangelical church, open daily.

Monday to Friday – from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.,
Saturday – from 10.00 to 15.00,
Sunday – from 11.30 to 18.00.
Observation platform on the temple tower:

Monday to Friday – from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.,
Saturday – from 10.00 to 15.00,
Sunday – from 12.00 to 18.00,
the last pass of visitors – 30 minutes before closing time.
There is no elevator to the upper floors of the building. To climb to the observation deck of the Kreuzkirche church, you will have to overcome 256 steps on foot.

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