Transylvania
May 5, 2014
ABOUT ROMANIA
June 20, 2014

Viscri

Apparently, Viscri is just a village situated in the Brasov county. However, this village became known by tourists worldwide after Prince Charles bought a house here in 1996 and talked about the beauties of the Transylvanian village. Charles’ village, as Viscri is known nowadays due to newspaper articles, is visited anually by 15 000 tourists, most of which are foreigners. However, none of these would have happened if it had not been for the local historical and architectural treasure: a fortified church dating back to the thirteenth century. This was built by the German colonists who settled in these parts of the country at the end of the twelfth century and found here a chapel. This was partially included in the fortified church. The church was first attested in 1400 as “alba ecclesia” and the document is a register of the taxes paid to the episcopate.  In the 14th century the eastern part of the church was rebuilt and in 1525, the first fortifications with towers were added. Two towers were placed outside the yard, on the Eastern and Southern sides. In the other cardinal points other towers were built: on the North one in a trapezoidal shape, in the East the smallest and most similar to a square. They are all provided with holes through which those inside could protect the fortification with medium or high caliber guns or arches with arrows. The towers are very well preserved creating a sense of greatness to the entire system of fortifications.  In the 18th century the church was surrounded by a second defense wall. The rooms in the tower played various roles in time. Some of them were used to store cereals, while others functioned as school.

Not only the walls and the system of fortifications attracts tourists. The inner walls of the church are marvelous and extremely well preserved. The classic 19th-century altar has as centerpiece “the Blessing of the Children” by the painter J. Paukratz from Rupea. The font was made from a capital of the 13th-century church. The whole monument rests in a wonderful landscape that encourages tourists to contemplate and focus on their inner peace. Due to its authenticity, Viscri was put on the world map of traditional villages, and has been a part of the UNESCO patrimony since 1999.