Monastery Church of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary
1719, repair; investor Jeronym Hlina, Abbot of Premonstratensian Monastery in Zeliv
The Gothic basilica of the Premonstratensian Monastery Church of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary in Zeliv was rebuilt in the late 14th century from the original Romanesque building. After a devastating fire in 1712, the Abbot began searching for an architect and designer who would rebuild the church. Santini comes to Zeliv in 1714 to design a project and then supervises construction until its completion in 1720. Santini’s task in Zeliv was of a different nature to those in Sedlec or Kladruby, where it was just interpretation of the original medieval temple in the Baroque-Gothic style. In Zeliv, he was retained to erect a new building and attach it to the reconstructed Gothic chancel. The axis of the church is visually extended by a front vestibule and side towers. Between them is a Gothic monstrance. It is decorated according to Santini‘s design from 1719. The spatial design of the interior has a complicated concept. It consists of 3 naves, which are divided by hanging pendant keystones. They look incredibly fragile compared to medieval construction, as do the insights into the upper level near the large side windows.