The Krakowska Gate and the Grodzka Gate in Lublin

The Krakowska Gate in Lublin

The Krakowska Gate in Lublin ©bargeboards/Flick

As an architectural symbol of Lublin, the Krakowska Gate along the Grodzka Gate, is one of the two original gates of the city, built in the XIV century and rebuilt in Gothic style in the Baroque period. It connects the old city center and the south of the city, considered to be one of the most elegant element of the Old Town, and a favorite entering place of royal and parlamental people.

Known as the “Gate of the Jews”, as it functioned as a passageway that connects the old town and Jewish quarter, the Grodzka Gate is one of the first items made of stone as part of Lublin’s medieval fortifications.

The Krakowska Gate

The name “Krakowska” comes from the way used by the royal family that united the city of Lublin with the capital of Poland in those times – Krakow. The gate was also known as the “Upper Gate”, as compared to the Grodzka Gate, it is located in the lower part of the city.

The road between the Lublin Castle and the Grodzka Gate

The road between the Lublin Castle and the Grodzka Gate ©Poland MFA/Flick

Over time, the Krakowska Gate had different purposes: defense, residential and commercial. It was equipped with a clock and a trumpeter that announced each hour from the balcony and recited the anthem of Krakow every night. Since 1844, the gate was under the protection of the fire brigade, so in the superior part was built a gallery, from where the whole city could be seen.

The present appearance of the Krakowska Gate dates back from 1959-1964, as the result of the building’s restoration program. Today the gate houses the History Museum of the city.

The Krakowska Gate in Lublin

The Krakowska Gate in Lublin ©bargeboards/Flick

The Grodzka Gate

The Grodzka Gate was built during the reign of King Casimir the Great of Poland, after the Tartar invasion in the year 1341, to protect the north-eastern part of the city. A wooden bridge was also built between the Grodzka Gate and the Lublin Castle.

In the 14th century it was dominated by the Gothic style with its brick walls decorated with battlements and the front being supported by buttresses. The Grodzka Gate was renovated and rebuilt for several times because of fire or war damages. In a period it had a Renaissance appearance, and finally was turned into a Classic building according to the planc of architect Dominic Merlini, losing its defensive character.

The Grodzka Gate in Lublin

The Grodzka Gate in Lublin ©centralniak/Flick

In 1873 it became a private property, after 1944 was used by the School of Fine Arts and then by the theater studio of Lublin.

Currently, the building is the headquarters of the “Osrodek Brama Grodzka – Teatr NN” theater , which commemorates the presence of Jews in Lublin, by presenting a multimedia exhibition on the existence of the Hebrew neighborhood in the city since 1939.

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