Treasures of the Piast Dynasty

Temporary exhibitions

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  • Tuesday, January 21, 2020 - Sunday, April 19, 2020


On 20 January 1320, the coronation of King Ladislaus the Short at Wawel Castle ended the two-century long period of regional fragmentation. From then on, almost all Poland’s monarchs were crowned at Wawel Cathedral. The exhibition Treasures of the Piast Dynasty. 700th Anniversary of the Coronation of Ladislaus the Short marks the anniversary of the first blessing of a royal couple in Kraków.

Wawel Royal Castle presents some of the oldest and most precious royal insignia, kept in the cathedral treasury and Wawel collections. They include the spear of St Maurice, presented to Poland’s first king Bolesław Chrobry by Emperor Otto III at the tomb of St Wojciech in Gniezno, and the Szczerbiec sword used during the coronation of Ladislaus the Short, also linked by legend with the first king of Poland. We will also see many precious jewels dating back to the Piast dynasty, kept in historic churches in Małopolska, Wielkopolska and Mazowsze. Some of the finest objects from between the 10th and 14th centuries include memorabilia of St Kinga from the Poor Clare Nuns convent in Stary Sącz, a gold cross made from two 13th-century crowns, beautiful jewels from the treasury in Środa Śląska and precious liturgical vessels and sacral objects funded by King Casimir the Great, the last Piast to sit on the Polish throne. (Dorota Dziunikowska, “Karnet” monthly)



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