DRAGHIA wooden church, near Coroieni, Maramures County, Romania

The wooden church, general view

The wooden church, general view

The settlement was recorded in 1395, as property of Drag knez, from whom the name of the village comes. The village was recognized as settlement in 1552 by Alexandru Lapusneanu, Prince of Moldavia, who ruled as the successor of Stefan cel Mare, Bogdan I and Petru Rares.

The wooden church has as its patron saints “The Holy Archangels” and was built by Both Grigore, in the cemetery in 1706, with the contribution of the local faithful. He carved his name on the top beam of the frame to the entrance door.

The construction is of oak, double jointed at the corners, with beautifully rounded braces on which massive beams support the framework of the roof. The lowered eaves are decorated with deep patterns made in steps. The uniform roof is covered with double shingles and extends over the pentagonal apse. The bell-tower is above the pronaos approximately at the middle of the framework.

The balcony of the watchtower is supported by eight pillars fixed to the upper corona by

The wooden church, detail

The wooden church, detail

massive braces that form side openings in the shape of upside down triangles.

The spire is very flared at its bottom and rises as a cone ending with a wrought iron cross which is similar to those at the half-spire on the coping.

The frame of the entrance door has a Slavonic inscription and a wonderful decoration set out in semi-circles with twisted ropes and wolf’s teeth, the sun framed by flower petals and the moon surrounded by decorative fir-tree branches. On the frame various rosettes, the Sun, the moon and half-moons complete the decorations of the framework.

The frames of the passage door between the pronaos and the nave are also exceptional, decorated with rosettes in old patterns. These decorations distinguish this church from the others.

The wooden church, detail

The wooden church, detail

The interior painting has been affected by the elements. Fragments of portraits and scenes are preserved in the pronaos, depicting The Foolish and The Wise Virgins, and on the ceiling vault we see the face of an angel with wings spread wide. The colors used are bright red, yellow, light blue and brick-red.

An original interpretation of Jacob’s Ladder, with the ladder in the middle of trees and exotic plants, can be seen in the nave. On the vault, The Trinity is painted in a medallion surrounded by Cherubs and Angels blowing trumpets.

The Iconostasis is a massive structure of painted wood that has been repainted. The panels

Holy Doors

Holy Doors

show The Apostles, and Jesus as High Priest in the center. Christ Crucified is painted on a cross and placed on the arcade connecting the lconostasis with the vault. Here the sun and moon with human features are bordered on the right and left by other scenes.

The Holy Doors are made of wooden boards. The four Evangelists are in simple frames

doubled by brace-like ornaments. The Annunciation completes the scene. On one of the sides, the year 1797 is painted, which probably was the year the Holy Doors and the lconostasis were painted.

The portraits of Archangels Michael and Gabriel, Cain and Abel, Melchizedek, Saint Eftimie, Grigore Bogoslav, and Vasile cel Mare are painted in the Sanctuary.

PHOTO GALLERY

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