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Heinrich Magirius

German city in Saxony. It is particularly known for its Late Gothic hall church, the Annenkirche, and for its pottery.

Heinrich Magirius

The church was built after the foundation of the city in 1496/7 by Herzog Georg of Saxony, following the discovery of silver near by. Herzog Georg endowed the church and personally appointed the architects. The building, which was integrated into the regular plan of the city, was probably begun in 1499 by Conrad Pflüger, the highest-ranking Master of the Works in the Duchy. On Pflüger’s death in 1508 direction of the works was taken over by Peter Ulrich von Pirna (d 1513–14); the roof was built in 1512, the piers from 1514 to 1517. In 1515 Jacob Haylmann took over as Master of the Works, and the galleries and the imaginative vaults with patterns of loops and stars were built following his designs. The transept-like annexe to the south side, built in ...

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Virginia Jansen

Town in Bavaria, Germany. A Hohenstaufen possession, it was a free imperial city by the 13th century, and in the 1370s the walls were expanded to their present extent. The parish church of St Georg, one of the most famous Late Gothic, south German hall churches, dominates the town at the main crossroads; its south side, facing the old Town Hall and cemetery, was originally the show side. Civic pride is evident in the building, symbols of the bakers’ and coopers’ guilds in the east window demonstrating the importance of the guilds, which shared power with the patrician families from the late 14th century.

The earliest known church on the site of St Georg was built in the 12th century. The existing west tower was added c. 1220–30, and in the second half of the 14th century the church was expanded to include a six-bay nave of nearly the same dimensions as the present one and a single-aisled choir terminating in a five-sided apse. The present church, slightly off the axis of its predecessor, was founded in ...

Article

Lamego  

António Filipe Pimentel

Portuguese town in Trás-os-Montes. The episcopal city of Lamego was an important town in the Visigothic period, passing into Christian hands in 1057, when it became a bishopric for the second time. With the foundation of the Portuguese kingdom during the 12th century, its population grew and it developed into a city through the agency of Egas Moniz (d 1146), tutor to Duke (later King) Alfonso I (reg 1128/39–85). Under King Diniz (reg 1279–1325) commerce and industry was stimulated by the institution of a feira franca (free fair). The town and surrounding countryside preserve Roman and medieval traces, such as in the chapel of S Pedro, Balsemão; the church of S Maria de Almacave; the 13th-century castle with its remarkable vaulted cistern; and the Romanesque belfry of the cathedral. The cathedral is a fine example of rural Gothic of the 13th–14th centuries; its west front (...

Article

Laon  

William W. Clark and Elizabeth Pastan

French city in Aisne département with a population of c. 30,000. The original, upper town is situated on a plateau c. 200 m high, from which the Gothic cathedral (see §1 below) dominates the plains stretching north to Belgium. The site, a natural fortress, has been inhabited since the Neolithic period. It was fortified by the Romans in the 3rd century ad. The diocese was founded in ad 497 by Remigius, Bishop of Reims (c. 438–c. 533). Laon became a favoured residence of the Carolingian and Capetian kings, traces of whose palace, with an impressive donjon, survived until 1830. Medieval religious foundations in the city included the Benedictine abbey of St Vincent, the Augustinian priory of St Jean (both destr.), and the surviving chapel of the Knights Templar (for illustration see Knights Templar) and the important Premonstratensian abbey of St Martin. The latter’s 18th-century conventual buildings now house the hospital and the municipal library....

Article

Noyon  

Matthew Woodworth

French town on the Verse River in Picardy, 89 km north of Paris. Noyon was an important ecclesiastical centre from the Merovingian period, and is the site of one of the earliest Gothic cathedrals. Noyon was founded by the Gallo-Romans as the military camp Pagus Veromanduorum, whose original fortifications survived until the 10th century. The town gained preeminence in 531 when St Médard established it as his new episcopal headquarters, previously held at Saint-Quentin. Noyon Cathedral was the coronation site of both Charlemagne (in 768) and Hugh Capet (in 987), and the relics of its 7th-century bishop, St Eloi, were a popular pilgrimage destination.

The first three cathedrals at Noyon were destroyed by fire in 676, 859 (by the Normans), and 1131. The present Gothic building was begun in 1145–50 and the first three bays of its nave were complete by c. 1205. The cathedral is notable for its fully developed Gothic style at a very early date, although the design of its chevet bears little in common with Abbot Suger’s work at Saint-Denis. Noyon was also the first French Gothic building to feature a clearly defined transept, as previous cathedrals had lacked a central crossing or projecting arms. Noyon’s western towers and portals were complete by ...

Article

Tudela  

Pamela A. Patton

Spanish city on the River Ebro in the medieval kingdom of Navarre. Limited evidence exists of Roman, Visigothic, and early Muslim habitation; in 802, it became the centre of a semi-independent Muslim emirate ruled by a converted Visigothic dynasty called the Banu Qasi. Absorbed into the caliphate of Córdoba, with the latter’s dissolution in the early 11th century it became part of the taifa of Saragossa. In 1119 Tudela fell to Alfonso I, King of Aragon (reg 1104–34) and became, with Pamplona, one of Navarre’s key medieval centres.

Medieval Tudela was a multicultural city that preserved thriving Mudéjar and Jewish populations for centuries following its Christian conquest. Islamic monuments built prior to the conquest include fortifications, a castle, a bridge, and a congregational mosque, the latter razed in the later 12th century to make way for the church of S María la Mayor. The Jewish artistic legacy is exemplified by several Hebrew Bibles produced ...

Article

Túy  

S. Moralejo

[anc. Tude; Galician Tui]

City situated on the estuary of the River Miño in Pontevedra province, Galicia, Spain. Túy existed before the Roman conquest and grew in importance in the periods of Suevi and Visigothic domination (411–711), when it was the seat of a bishopric and a centre for minting coinage. After the Arab invasion (721), successive raids by Vikings (844–1016) and Arabs (997) frustrated attempts to restore the city. The independence of Portugal (1128) made Túy strategically important as a frontier fortress and the subject of frequent disputes between the new Kingdom and that of Castile and León, since its diocesan boundaries included Portuguese territory until the 15th century. Ferdinand II granted the city privileges (1170) and encouraged the rebuilding of its fortifications.

Medieval sources are unclear as to the site, or successive sites, of the city, although it is now generally agreed that the present location, on a hill dominating the River Miño and crowned by the fortified cathedral, could well be its original one. The restoration of the bishopric in ...

Article

Vitoria  

Germán Ramello Asensio

[Basque: Gasteiz]

Spanish city and capital of the province of Alava. It can be divided in two parts: the upper old quarter, perhaps of Visigothic origin, occupies an extended slope that is ellipsoid in shape, with its longest axis running from north to south; while the surrounding modern industrial town extends to the south and is at a considerably lower level. The 14th-century Gothic S Maria, a cathedral since 1862, is at the north central part of the old quarter and contains a magnificent doorway (c. 1400) in the vaulted west portico. The elliptical shape of the old town is flanked by the churches of S Miguel (14th century), with a very fine Baroque retable by Gregorio Fernández (1624–32), and S Vicente (15th century; tower 1865). The 14th-century S Pedro at the west side of the old town contains a fine carved Gothic portal. The modern part of Vitoria begins at the Plaza de la Virgen Blanca, which leads to the Plaza Mayor (...