The Holy Sepulchre

The building here is an imitation of the original Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, where Jesus was interred following his death on the cross. Although opinion was divided for many years as to the age of this chapel, discoveries made in 2009–2010 have meant that it can now be dated to before the year 1644.

Sample imageThe chapel was part of the set of original structures from 1630, evidence of which is provided by both an engraving of the town from 1673 and, most importantly, an inscription discovered on a wall inside the chapel which was found during the last comprehensive renovation of the work and confirms that the chapel had been visited by pilgrims as early as 1644.

The building is in the shape of a polygon, its interior divided into two parts – an entry space and the Holy Sepulchre itself, in which a statute of the recumbent Jesus Christ is placed.

The entry staircase leading to the gallery in front of the chapel is made up of thirty three steps, symbolising the length of Jesus Christ’s life. The present sandstone steps date back to 1908, when the staircase was reconstructed at the cost of the princely family.

The last large-scale restoration work to the chapel was performed in 1951 following damage sustained during the Second World War. Overall repairs were begun in the second half of 2009 in view of the fact that unfavourable climatic conditions and the work of vandals had again brought the building into a dismal state. This work was completed in the spring of 2010, and the building was reconsecrated in August 2010.

The chapel is not open to the public, though the interior of the building can be seen through the restored Baroque grating.