The Temple of St. Simeon in Kamenets

The Temple of St. Simeon in Kamenets


Churches, katolik churches, сathedral, monasteries

According to some records, Duke Vasily Vasilkovich, a founder of the town Kamenets, laid the foundation stone of the Temple of the Annunciation of the Most Holy Mother of God approximately in 1276.  Some sources state that the governor gifted to the temple books, crosses, icons, besides, he himself took an inventory of some of them.

Simeon Stolpnik has been considered to be the patron of Kamenets since the day of its foundation. The general inspection of 1562 includes mentioning of Father Andrey, “the pastor of Simeon”, and a wooden town temple.  As it was rather decayed in 1756, a new building was constructed instead of it ten years later. The wooden cross-shaped building had three domes that were connected with an allure. A new iconostasis with lateral icon-cases was installed after the repairs in the early 80-s of the XIX century.

The modern Temple of St. Simeon in Kamenets

 As the building had become dilapidated by 1912, by decree of O. L. Paevsky, the government contributed 50 000 rubles in terms of gold for the construction of a new temple. The construction of a brick temple had been finished upon the project of V. A. Srok by 1914. It was designed in Old Russian style as evidenced by many design features of the building.

The architectural features of the Temple of St. Simeon

The spatial composition of the sanctity consists of four parts: a porch finished with a belfry, refectory, catholicon and five-sided apse. There is an altar inside the temple oriented towards the East. As to the refectory, it has been previously used for divine services during winter, and sometimes for social needs of church people.

The high rectangular porch and two-tier belfry form the frontage of the temple.  In the center, there is an entrance ornamented with an arched portal. One can see a panel-painting with the image of Simeon Stolpnik next to it. The frontage vertically can be divided into three parts: a central and two lateral parts that are working premises. Each of them is flanked with pilasters and ornamented with arched exedras. A pilaster is a vertical projection that usually has a base and conventionally allows designing a column. The first and second tiers are octagons with arched windows. The building is finished with a high tent on the edges of which there are lucarnes. Such windows have vertical frames that at the top and sides are characterized by enclosed design.

What does attract attention in the inner decoration of the Temple of St. Simeon?

The inner decoration of the temple consists of three naves. They are so-called elongate premises separated by pillars or columns from the rest spaces of that type. The main decorative fixture is a three-tier iconostasis with wide icon-cases located at the sides of the installation. In its cente, there are the Holy doors with images of the Gospel writers Matthew, Mark, Luke and John the Theologian, also with the composition “The Annunciation”. One can see big icons “The Savior”, “Jesus Christus” and “Archidiaconus Stephen” on the left hand of it, “The Holy Spirit” (in the form of a pigeon) and “Michael the Archangel” – on the right hand. There is the composition “The Last Supper” above the Holy doors, the icons “Nativity of the Blessed Virgin” and “John the Forerunner” – on the left hand of it, “The Prophet Moses” and “The Entry of the Most Holy Virgin into the Temple” – on the right hand.

The sanctity is considered one of architectural gems of West Belarus.

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